Japan's largest electrical company on Saturday closed its $6.6 billion purchase of entertainment colossus MCA Inc., completing the largest Japanese acquisition of an American firm.
Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. acquired about 77.7 million shares of MCA stock at $66 per share, Matsushita said in a statement. Its acquisitions amount to about 97 percent of outstanding MCA shares.The buyout matches Matsushita's electronics products with MCA's movie and music empire. MCA runs Universal Studios, maker of such films as "E.T. the Extra-Terrestial," and "Jaws." The firm holds recording contracts with such artists as Guns N' Roses and Elton John and produces the television programs "Murder, She Wrote" and "Major Dad."
Matsushita products are marketed in the United States through such brand names as Panasonic, Technics and Quasar.
MCA will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Matsushita and all remaining MCA stockholders will be entitled to receive $66 in cash for each share still held, the statement said.
Legal obstacles were removed Friday, when a federal judge in Los Angeles rejected a bid by MCA shareholders seeking to block the sale. The lawsuit contended that MCA Chairman Lew Wasserman was violating Securities and Exchange Commission rules by receiving tax-free stock transfers as part of the deal.
Wasserman alone is to receive a new preferred Matsushita stock that saves him $100 million in capital gains taxes and additional estate taxes.
U.S. District Judge Manuel Real did not dismiss the lawsuit, but said there was insufficient evidence presented to block the transaction.
In a separate case, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia denied a last-minute motion in an antitrust suit filed by Go-Video Inc., maker of dual-deck VCRs.