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Dec. 11, 2014, 5:52 PM
- In a new 13D, Elliott Management says it now owns a 7.7M-share (6.8%) stake in Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO).
- Two months ago, the activist disclosed a 4.9% stake in FDO, and called on the discount retailer to provide Dollar General with "an even playing field in its continuing efforts to acquire the Company." Last week, Dollar Tree said it expects its pending acquisition of FDO to close by early February.
Dec. 5, 2014, 9:44 AM
- Dollar General (NYSE:DG) responds to an update from Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR) on the chase for Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO) within hours.
- The company holds its position that prices at Wal-Mart are what determine its own pricing decisions.
- The working theory is that a DG-FDO combination wouldn't lead to widespread price increases for consumers.
- Good progress on talks with the FTC on store divestitures is reported by Dollar General.
- An update (higher offer?) to Family Dollar shareholders is also promised.
Dec. 5, 2014, 7:20 AM
- Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR) says it expects a deal to acquire Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO) will close by early February.
- The discounter thinks it will only have to divest a small number of stores.
- Talks with the FTC over the matter are still progressing.
- Dollar Tree couldn't resist taking a shot at Dollar General (NYSE:DG) over its chase of Family Dollar, noting the FTC is likely to ask for divestitures far in excess of the 1,500 stores offered up to DG.
- Family Dollar shareholders are schedule to vote on the Dollar Tree offer on December 23.
Dec. 4, 2014, 8:26 AM
- Dollar General (NYSE:DG) says it remains committed to its acquisition bid for Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO).
- The company plans to give an update on its offer before the Family Dollar shareholder meeting scheduled for December 23.
- Some retail analysts are taking that as an indication a higher offer is coming down the pike.
- Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR) will be dialed into the developments.
- Family Dollar closed yesterday at $79.48, just below the $80 Dollar General offer price.
Dec. 1, 2014, 1:02 PM
- Deutsche Bank says Family Dollar (FDO +0.4%) was one of the surprise stories of Black Friday 2014 as a toy deal drove strong store traffic.
- The discounter dialed up its promotional activity with a buy-one-get-one-free toy offer.
- The company was also more aggressive with Thanksgiving store hours this year, keeping doors open for 11 hours on the holiday.
Nov. 29, 2014, 10:29 AM
- Analysts with Gasbuddy.com predict some gas stations in the U.S. will offer $2 per gallon gas by Christmas.
- The last time the average price of gas in the U.S. was below $2 was in March of 2009.
- Forecasts from economists vary widely on the overall gas benefit to consumers for Q4. The high end from the group is an outlook of $300 per household, while the low end is closer to $100.
- Most analysts see an immediate lift for retail chains with large distribution channels. Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), Target (NYSE:TGT), Costco (NASDAQ:COST), Dollar General (NYSE:DG), Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO), Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR), Big Lots (NYSE:BIG), and Five Below (NASDAQ:FIVE) come to mind.
- Airline stocks (JBLU, DAL, UAL, LUV, AAL, RJET, ALK, HA, ALGT, VA) have already ripped strong gains off the OPEC news, although some see even more long-term upside as forward fuel hedges get reworked.
- A sustained period of low gas prices should lift restaurant stocks (CAKE, CBRL, CMG, DNKN, DPZ, DRI, EAT, JACK, MCD, PNRA, RRGB, RT, SBUX, SONC, WEN, BWLD, THI, BDL, NATH, LUB, BKW, CHUY, BLMN, PZZA, TXRH, DENN, KKD, BBRG, DFRG, BOBE, RUTH, IRG, DIN) say some analysts.
- The gaming sector is (CZR, PNK, BYD, ISLE, CNTY, MCRI, MGM, NYNY) also an off-the-radar pick to bounce.
Nov. 19, 2014, 12:38 PM
- Family Dollar (FDO -1.1%) pushes back the date that shareholders will vote on the proposed merger with Dollar Tree (DLTR +0.2%) to December 23.
- The company expects to have an update by the end of the first week in December on a FTC review of the combination.
- The development doesn't give Dollar General (DG -3.5%) much time to decide if it will raise its offer for Family Dollar amid reports more stores than anticipated will need to be divested to clear regulatory hurdles.
- Previously: FTC may require Dollar General to divest 4K+ stores
Nov. 19, 2014, 5:13 AM
- Dollar General (NYSE:DG) may have to divest more than 4,000 stores, more than double the 1,500 stores it said it was willing to sell, if it wants to gain regulatory approval to buy Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO), reports The New York Post.
- Getting the FTC to change its mind could take months, but rival Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR) wants a vote on its proposed Family Dollar merger by Dec. 31.
- Without the time to explain its case to the FTC, Dollar General could be forced to either raise its bid or live with the added number of divestitures.
- DG -1.8% premarket
Oct. 31, 2014, 2:51 PM
- Dollar General (DG +0.2%) extends its tender offer for shares of Family Dollar (FDO +0.4%) until December 31.
- The original tender expired today with only a small portion of FDO shares ending up in the hands of Dollar General.
- The extension pushes the decision for Family Dollar shareholders past a special meeting set for December 11 to vote on the lower Dollar Tree (DLTR +1.7%) acquisition offer.
- FDO trades at $78.15 vs. the $74.50 DLTR offer and $80.00 DG bid.
Oct. 28, 2014, 11:32 AM
- Redbook notes the timing of Halloween on a Friday is giving a boost to merchandise sales related to the holiday as more consumers prep for parties and celebrations.
- Both Redbook and ICSC's weekly read on retail store sales showed year-over-year improvement with Halloween sales a factor.
- Stores have also been extending their hours to draw in more shoppers.
- Looking for a Halloween boost: DLTR, DG, FDO, KR, SVU, SWY, WMT, TGT, HSY, KRFT, CVS, RAD, WAG, MDLZ.
Oct. 17, 2014, 4:25 PM
- Elliott Management, a veteran of many activist campaigns, says it has a 4.9% stake in Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO), and (in an open letter) urges management to provide Dollar General (NYSE:DG) with "an even playing field in its continuing efforts to acquire the Company at price levels that are clearly superior" to that provided by FDO's current deal with Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR).
- Elliott asserts FDO was "in a position earlier this year to facilitate a bidding war between two large, well-capitalized strategic acquirers, " and that its board "could have and should have engaged with Dollar General in order to gain a better understanding of their pricing architecture in aid of a more comprehensive anti-trust analysis."
- Proxy war: Elliott has nominated 7 directors to FDO's board to "preserve our ability to seek to elect directors at the 2015 Annual Meeting who are both qualified and committed to achieving a value maximizing outcome for shareholders."
- Though Dollar General is offering $600M more for Family Dollar than Dollar Tree, regulatory scrutiny of its bid is already intense: The FTC sent a second request for info last week.
- FDO +1% AH. DG +0.5%. DLTR -0.5%.
Oct. 15, 2014, 12:58 PM
- Top Wal-Mart (WMT -2.3%) U.S. exec Greg Folan announced the company will open between 180 and 200 Neighborhood Markets stores during its next fiscal year.
- The expansion plan for the concept is smaller than the forecast for 270 to 300 NM stores to be opened this fiscal year.
- Neighborhood Markets has had a stronger impact on the dollar store group (FDO, DG, DLTR) than grocery stores so far, according to analysts.
- Highlights from Wal-Mart's investor day
- Wal-Mart investor meeting webcast
Oct. 10, 2014, 5:31 PM
- The FTC has issued a second request for additional info to Dollar General (NYSE:DG) regarding its $9.1B buyout offer for Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO). State AGs have already been probing the bid on antitrust grounds.
- DG -1.2% AH. For now, Family Dollar continues supporting Dollar Tree's (NASDAQ:DLTR) $8.5B offer.
Oct. 10, 2014, 11:09 AM
- There was frustrated tone from Family Dollar (FDO -0.4%) after the company barely managed a positive comp in FQ4 despite a healthy round of promotions.
- The discounter's gross margin rate fell 170 bps to 32.95% for the quarter and operating profit slid 469 bps to 1.53%.
- Management pointed to merchandise mark-ups and mix (tobacco, frozen foods) as margin depressors.
- Macroeconomic factors were also cited. CEO Howard Levine put it bluntly: "Our core customer is still struggling."
- Execs were silent on the pending offers from Dollar Tree and Dollar General.
- Earnings call transcript
Oct. 9, 2014, 4:17 PM
- Family Dollar Stores (NYSE:FDO): FQ4 EPS of $0.73 misses by $0.04.
- Revenue of $2.61B (+4.4% Y/Y) beats by $30M.
- Shares -2.25% AH.
Sep. 29, 2014, 2:50 PM
- Deutsche Bank thinks Dollar Tree (DLTR +0.6%) and Dollar General (DG -0.3%) could be prepping to make fresh bids for Family Dollar Stores (FDO).
- The investment firm is sticking with its Buy rating on FDO amid the potential for new action.
- What to watch: State AGs are reportedly looking at bids from Dollar General and Dollar Tree for FDO. It's possible the new offers from the discounters could involve a plan to divest more stores in front of the merger to appease regulators.
Family Dollar Stores Inc provides consumers with a selection of competitively priced merchandise in convenient neighbourhood stores. Its merchandise assortment includes consumables, home products, apparel accessories, seasonal and electronics.
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