ANKENY, Iowa — Casey’s General Stores here has once again recommended its shareholders reject a takeover bid from Canadian counterpart Alimentation Couche-Tard, saying its latest offer not only undervalues the c-store operator but that its board was having discussions with another potential suitor.
Casey’s did not identify the latest bidder but said it had received a “preliminary proposal from a strategic third party” for $40 a share. That bid is more than Couche-Tard’s standing $38.50 offer but still undervalues the company, according to William Walljasper, Casey’s chief financial officer, speaking in a conference call Tuesday discussing the chain’s first-quarter results.
The revelation of another suitor drew a swift response from Couche-Tard Tuesday, which said the timing was “suspicious,” given it came only two weeks before Casey’s annual meeting and just days after Casey’s own recapitalization. “We believe this is another maneuver orchestrated by the Casey's board to artificially inflate its stock price leading up to the shareholder vote,” Couche-Tard said in a statement.