Why Steinway Musical Instruments Shares Popped

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Steinway Musical Instruments (NYSE: LVB  ) were hitting a high note today, gaining as much as 16% after agreeing to be taken private by Kohlberg & Company.

So what: Kohlberg, a private equity firm, said it would pay $438 million to take ownership of the famed maker of pianos and other musical instruments. Oddly, the announcement came just six months after Steinway had concluded a period of exploring strategic options by deciding not to sell itself. Today's deal seems to indicate that Steinway is getting a better price that it could find during the exploration period.

Now what: Kohlberg will pay all cash for the 160-year-old Steinway, and at $35 a share, it's paying a 15% premium over Friday's closing price of $30.43. Steinway shares actually closed north of that mark, at $35.28, indicating that investors are hoping for a juicier offer from another party, as part of the agreement with Kohlberg allows for a 45-day period to solicit other offers. Still, $35 a share is a post-recession high for the company, and near its all-time high around $38, meaning the Kohlberg offer looks like a good deal for shareholders, especially for a company with slim profits and stagnant growth.

To see if Steinway picks up any other offers in the next 45 days, add it to your Watchlist here.


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