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Why Shares of Genworth Financial Are Falling Today

By Lou Whiteman – Updated Jun 30, 2020 at 10:59AM

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After nearly four years it appears we are nearing the end of the company's long-running sale drama.

What happened

Genworth Financial (GNW 0.29%) on Tuesday announced another extension to its proposed deal to be acquired by China Oceanwide Holdings, the 15th time the two sides have extended the deadline to complete a deal originally announced in 2016. But this extension also lays out the terms to call the deal off, leading shares of the insurance company to decline 25% at the open on Tuesday.

So what

The China Oceanwide/Genworth saga has rivaled a bad sitcom romance, but after nearly four years of drama it appears we might finally be heading toward a conclusion. In October 2016, China Oceanwide announced plans to acquire the onetime General Electric subsidiary for $2.7 billion, but regulatory hurdles and other issues have complicated efforts to get the deal done.

An investor puts his head on a desk with a stock chart falling behind him.

Image source: Getty Images.

Genworth on Tuesday said that the deadline to complete the deal has been extended until Sept. 30, giving Oceanwide more time to finalize financing. Due to the delay, Genworth said it will take actions to address near-term financial obligations.

For the merger to remain in place, Oceanwide has to provide evidence by Aug. 31 that it can secure the $1 billion in funding it needs to complete the deal. Absent that evidence, Genworth has the right to terminate the transaction.

Now what

Genworth is also plotting out what steps it will take to raise cash and meet its obligations in the event the deal falls through. The company said it expects those steps to include a debt offering, as well as setting up the sale of a 19.9% stake in its U.S. mortgage insurance business via an initial public offering.

If the deal can get done, there is significant upside for shareholders. Genworth shares are currently trading at less than $2 apiece, far below the $5.43 per share offer price. That's a pretty clear indication investors are not expecting a happy ending.

Lou Whiteman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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