UPDATED: 1:45 p.m. Eastern Standard Time 24 April 2012
The bidding war for Great Wolf Resorts might be winding to a close. Apollo Global Management has put in a bid of $7.85 per share, which works out to a purchase price of approximately $760 million, including debt, for Great Wolf. KSL has informed Great Wolf it does not intend to make any further offers.
Great Wolf's stock was trading at $7.84 per share as of 1:50 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.
UPDATED 7:50 a.m. Eastern Standard Time 16 April 2012
Great Wolf Resorts informed Apollo Global Management on 15 April that it was prepared to accept KSL Capital Partners' bid of $7 a share.
Apollo Global's previous offer of $6.75 will be terminated within three business days, Great Wolf said in a statement. However, there is no assurance a deal with KSL will necessarily be made, the company added.
The back-and-forth bidding for Great Wolf Resorts is doing wonders for the stock price of the water park resorts operator.
During the past several days, Apollo Global Management and KSL Capital Partners have been busy trying to trump each other with bids to acquire Great Wolf. Apollo started things off last month with a bid of $5 per share. KSL countered last week with a bid of $6.25; Apollo fired back at $6.75; and, over the weekend, KSL upped the ante again to $7 a share.
Prior to this frenzied bidding, Great Wolf’s shares were trading at approximately $4.20 a share. As is evident by the chart below, however, the stock price has seen quite a bump during the past several weeks, though during the past few days it has seemed to stabilize at approximately $7.30 a share.
Since 1 March, Great Wolf’s stock price has increased by 79.7%, closing Thursday at $7.33 a share, just 12 cents below its 52-week high. It’s been more than four years since the company’s stock price traded so high.
The average target price on the stock, according to MarketWatch, is $5 a share.
Great Wolf’s market capitalization as of the end of day Monday was $241.22 million. KSL’s latest bid would represent a purchase price of $230.37 million. Great Wolf operates 11 water park resorts in the United States.
Thus far, the primary players have been mum about the bidding and potential plans for Great Wolf should they win the asset, so it’s unclear what strategies might be put in place once the dust finally settles to help maintain this newly created shareholder value.