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Investors approve Marriott Starwood deal

BBC News BBC News 8/04/2016
Sheraton hotel © Getty Images Sheraton hotel

The shareholders of both Marriott and Starwood Hotels have approved the tie-up of the two hotel chains.

The approval is the latest hurdle Marriott has overcome in its effort to buy Starwood- owner of the Sheraton, Westin and W hotel brands.

Marriott will pay $12.4bn (£8.7bn) - a figure it reached after a bidding war against Chinese insurance firm Anbang.

Anbang abandoned its $14bn takeover offer for Starwood last week, citing "market considerations".

"Today's vote is a significant step toward closing, and we are grateful for the continued enthusiasm and support for this merger," said Thomas Mangas, Starwood's chief executive officer.

The purchase will create the largest hotel chain with 5,500 properties worldwide.

Marriott said the deal is expected to close by mid-2016. Its shareholders voted 97% in favour of the deal, while 95% of Starwood's voted for the purchase.

The three week back-and-forth between Marriott and Anbang highlighted the growing role of Chinese companies in global mergers and acquisitions.

There have been $92bn worth of foreign takeovers by Chinese companies this year, according to data provider Dealogic.

Marriott shares were up 0.9% and Starwood shares rose 0.25% on Friday.

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