updated - May 25, 2013 Saturday EDT
Canada's largest home-improvement chain Rona Inc. has rebuffed Lowe's Cos.' C$1.6 billion offer, Reuters reported on Thursday.
Rona officials said the C$14.50 per share proposal was not in the company's best interest. Lowe's, the world's second largest home improvement chain offered C$14.50 a share on Sunday, July 8, making it a 36.7 percent premium to the stock's closing price on Friday, July 6.
Lowe's operates more than 1,745 stores in North America, including 31 in Canada.
T he Quebec government said last week it may intervene after Lowe's Cos. Inc. made a $1.8-billion offer for Rona Inc. In a statement to the Globe and Mail, Quebec Finance Minister Raymond Bachand said the deal is not in Quebec or Canada's interest, and said he is directing Investment Quebec to look at "all steps to counter this bid" - including creating a fund to "protect Quebec's interests."
"The board believes that, in the best interests of Rona and its stakeholders, the corporation should remain focused on executing its business plan with a view to capturing significant opportunities that it sees for its business," Rona said in a statement.
Boucherville, Quebec-based Rona has struggled as Home Depot and Lowe's have opened up stores in Canada. Sales at Rona's established stores, or same-store sales - a key measure for retailers - dropped 7.3 percent in the year ended December 25, 2011.
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