Smithfield Foods, with 10,000 NC employees, to be sold to Chines - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

Smithfield Foods, with 10,000 NC employees, to be sold to Chinese

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Google Maps image of the Tar Heel plant. Google Maps image of the Tar Heel plant.

Chinese meat processor Shuanghui International Holdings Ltd. has agreed to buy Smithfield Foods, the world's largest pork producer, for approximately $4.72 billion.

Shareholders of Smithfield will receive $34 per share under terms of the deal announced Wednesday. That's a 31% premium to the company's closing stock price of $25.97 on Tuesday.

Smithfield  runs the largest slaughterhouse and meat-processing plant in the world, located in Tar Heel, North Carolina in Bladen County.

Both companies' boards unanimously approved the transaction, which still needs approval from Smithfield's shareholders. The transaction may also be subject to review by the U.S.'s Committee on Foreign Investment.

 Smithfield has 10,000 workers and several operations in North Carolina, including in Kinston, Wilson, Tar Heel and Rose Hill. 

The companies put the deal's total value around $7.1 billion. Smithfield Foods Inc. brands include Armour, Farmland and its namesake. Smithfield has about 138.8 million outstanding shares according to FactSet.

Smithfield says the NC workers include those with Murphy Brown, the livestock production subsidiary of Smithfield Foods.  Murphy brown is based in Warsaw.

In a news release, Smithfield says there will be no changes to employee status.

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