Apria merger nears completion

Sunday, October 19, 2008

LAKE FOREST, Calif. - Apria Healthcare shareholders have approved a merger with Sky Acquisition LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of an affiliate of The Blackstone Group, the provider announced Oct. 10.

The parties are expected to complete the merger in the fourth quarter of 2008.

In a special meeting, about 38, 430,579 shares were voted (in person or by proxy), representing 85.5% of Apria's total outstanding shares entitled to vote. Of those shares, 38,294,129 shares approved the merger, representing 99.6% of the shares voted.

Under the terms of the merger, each issued and outstanding share of Apria common stock can be converted into $21 in cash, without interest and less applicable withholding taxes.

On Friday, Apria's shares were trading at $15.99. Its market capitalization: $702.74 million.

In June, Apria announced that it had negotiated a $1.6 billion buyout offer from an affiliate of The Blackstone Group, one of the largest and most prestigious private equity firms in the country.

Apria provides home respiratory therapy, home infusion therapy and home medical equipment through about 550 locations serving patients in all 50 states.