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Banana Giants Chiquita, Fyffes Agree to Merger

Chiquita Brands International (NYSE:CQB) and Irish fruit seller Fyffes agreed on Monday to a $1.07 billion merger, creating the world's largest banana company.The all-stock deal will create a new company, ChiquitaFyffes, with sales of more than 160 million boxes of bananas. Combined, the two fruit firms have 32,000 employees and about $4.6 billion in annual revenue.Chiquita's shareholders will own 50.7% of the new company's stock upon completion of the deal. Shares of ChiquitaFyffes will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange and domiciled in Ireland.Fyffes and Charlotte, N.C.-based Chiquita said the combined company, which would surpass privately owned Dole Food as the top supplier of bananas worldwide, will maintain offices in Dublin and North Carolina.Chiquita jumped 15.6% to $12.53 shortly after the opening bell. Through Friday's close, the stock was up 60.8% over the last 12 months.Fyffes executive chairman David McCann will lead the new company as its chief executive. Chiquita ...

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