Cerberus Taking United Rentals Private

GREENWICH, Conn. (AP) – Cerberus will acquire United Rentals Inc. and take it private for about $4 billion in cash, the equipment rental company said Monday.

Including about $2.6 billion in assumed debt, the transaction is valued at $6.6 billion.

The $34.50-per-share purchase price represents a 7 percent premium over United's closing price of $32.37 on Friday. It is a 25 percent premium to the stock's closing price of $27.55 on April 10, the day the company said it was exploring new strategic options.

For the year ended Dec. 31, 2006, the company posted profit of $224 million on revenue of $3.64 billion.

United Rentals, whose board approved the transaction, said it can continue to seek third-party offers through Aug. 31. Holders of the company's preferred stock, including affiliates of Apollo Management LP, which represent about 18 percent of the company's voting power, have agreed to vote in favor of the deal.

The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions, including United stockholder approval and regulatory review.

Bank of America, Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley and Lehman Brothers have committed to provide debt financing.