Morgans Hotel Group shareholders OK purchase by SBE

Nazarian's acquisition is valued at $800M

Hudson Hotel (inset: Sam Nazarian)
Hudson Hotel (inset: Sam Nazarian)

Shareholders voted to approve SBE Entertainment Group’s acquisition of Morgans Hotel Group on Wednesday, in a deal valued at about $800 million.

Sam Nazarian’s SBE, a Los Angeles-based hospitality group will acquire Morgans’ [TRDataCustom] 20-hotel portfolio, which includes the Hudson Hotel on Columbus Circle, and is set to close on the deal later this year, the Wall Street Journal reported.

In May, SBE reached a deal to buy Morgans for $2.25 per share, but one shareholder subsequently sued to block it. Another failed deal, in 2015, would have merged the two companies with SBE taking two of the companies hotels.

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SBE was reportedly partnering with Ron Burkle, a billionaire shareholder and the co-founder of private equity firm Yucaipa Companies, to acquire Morgans, according to the New York Post. Burkle was not mentioned in the release and a spokesperson for SBE was not immediately available for comment.

The company also received a rival offer of $2.75 per share from an unnamed bidder, the Post reported.

In its May issue, The Real Deal went behind the scenes to trace the origins of the company’s woes. [WSJ] — Chava Gourarie