Hertz Extends Offer for Dollar Thrifty

Hertz (NYSE:HTZ) has extended its tender offer for shares of Dollar Thrifty Automotive (NYSE:DTG) by about a month in its ongoing effort to thwart rival Avis Budget (NYSE:CAR) in their lengthy bidding war.

While Hertz is unable to acquire Dollar Thrifty without board approval given the company's May adoption of a "poison pill," the extension until August 5 represents its strong intent to buy the smaller car renter.

Hertz raised its offer in May to buy Dollar Thrifty to $72 in cash, or $2.08 billion, seven months after its first bid was rejected by Dollar Thriftys shareholders. In June, Dollar Thriftys board unanimously recommended that shareholders once again reject the bid.

As of July 8, only about one million shares of Dollar Thriftys 29 million had been tendered.

Avis raised its bid in September but has yet to match Hertzs largest offer. Wall Streets expectation that Avis would counter Hertz's bid have come down significantly since Avis acquired its European counterpart in June for $1 billion.

With only four rivals in the business, Hertz, Dollar Thrifty, Avis and the privately-owned leader, Enterprise, an acquisition has raised antitrust concerns. As of June, both companies had been competing to win antitrust clearance for their rival buyout deals.