New deadline set in Rite Aid-Albertsons vote
Rite Aid and Albertsons have set a new election deadline related to the companies' proposed merger.
The election deadline for holders of shares of Rite Aid common stock, former service providers that are holders of Rite Aid stock and holders of Rite Aid restricted share awards, to elect the form of consideration they wish to receive in connection with the merger is Aug. 13 at 5 p.m.
Albertsons announced in February a plan to buy Rite Aid's more than 2,500 drugstores. The grocer offered either a share of its stock and $1.83 in cash or slightly more than one Albertsons share for every 10 Rite Aid shares.
Two prominent advisory firms — Institutional Shareholder Services and Glass Lewis & Co. — and a big shareholder are urging stock owners to reject the offer in a vote to be held Thursday. Deal opponents have questioned the price and also whether Rite Aid would be better off remaining a stand-alone company.
Rite Aid shareholders are scheduled to vote on whether to approve the sale of the company to Albertsons on Aug. 9.
The election deadline announcement comes a day after Rite Aid reduced full-year earnings projections.
The company says it now expects a net loss of $125 million to $170 million for the year, wider than the previous guidance range provided in June for a loss of $40 million to $95 million.
On an adjusted basis, which excludes non-recurring items and is typically compared with analyst expectations, the company now expects a loss of 4 cents a share to breakeven. In June, Rite Aid said it expected adjusted earnings per share of 2 cents to 6 cents.
“Based upon recent generic drug bid activity and on anticipated generic drug market conditions for the balance of the year, generic drug purchasing efficiencies are expected to be significantly below Rite Aid’s previous experience and will not meet the company’s expectations for the year,” the company said in a statement.
Rite Aid also lowered its fiscal 2019 outlook for adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, which ends in February 2019, to $540 million to $590 million from $615 million to $675 million. Meanwhile, the company affirmed its sales guidance range of $21.7 billion to $22.1 billion and same-store sales outlook of flat to up 1% from a year ago.