The Boston Globe reports that Market Basket’s ousted leader, Arthur T. Demoulas, and his side of the Demoulas family have made an offer to buy out rival family members for control of the company.
“We believe that our offer is a very full and fair one and should meet or exceed a seller’s expectations of the value of the company,’’ Demoulas said in part of a statement to the Globe.
You can read the Globe’s report, including Demoulas’s full statement, here.
The offer comes at a spellbinding time for Market Basket—about a month after Demoulas was fired from his position, nearly a week into a worker revolt in his support that has upended normal store operations, and two days before a scheduled board of directors meeting.
Demoulas was fired by the Market Basket board on June 23. The board is scheduled to meet Friday in Boston, the same day employees and customers are planning another rally in Tewksbury to back their former CEO.
Employees have fought for Demoulas’s return since his ouster last month. The situation has gone nuclear over the last week as stores have stopped taking deliveries, employees have been fired, inventories have begun to thin, customers have boycotted, politicians have grasped at the headlines, and workers have rallied outside store doors. Protesters have speculated that under current leadership, the company might move to raise prices, cut employee compensation and benefits, or even sell the company or its property. Co-CEOs Felicia Thornton and James Gooch have told employees their benefits won’t change.
The company’s board members are appointed by its shareholders, who are all family to Arthur T. and his nemesis and cousin, Arthur S. Demoulas.
Until last summer, Arthur T. had one member of Arthur S.’s family shareholders on his side, allowing him to stay in control of Market Basket. When that shareholder reportedly shifted her allegiance to Arthur S.’s side last year, it began the process by which Arthur T. was booted from the CEO post last month. Arthur S.’s side owns slightly more than half of the company—the result of a judgment that found Arthur T.’s side to have defrauded Arthur S.’s out of much of its stake. That share is what Arthur T. is targeting.
For all involved, Arthur T.’s firing last month probably feels like a million years ago. But that’s hardly the start of it: The saga of the Demoulas family goes back decades.
Read the full Boston Globe report here.