Investors vote for Mars-Wrigley combination
MILWAUKEE - Shareholders of Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co. have approved the sale of the company for $23 billion to Mars Inc., a combination that will end more than a century of family control as the chewing gum company becomes part of what will now be the world's largest candy maker.
The deal, expected to be finalized around Oct. 6, joins the company that makes Juicy Fruit and Big Red gums with the privately held maker of M&Ms, Snickers, and Skittles, bumping Britain's Cadbury PLC from the top candy-making slot.
The voting results were released yesterday at a shareholder meeting in Wrigley's hometown of Chicago. Holders of two-thirds of the company's roughly 272.7 million outstanding common shares had to approve the deal for it to go through.
The company did not say what percent approved.