CINAR shareholders voted at a special meeting in Montreal on Feb. 17, 2004 to accept the acquisition offer from the investor group comprised of former Nelvana execs Michael Hirsh and Toper Taylor, and TD Capital Canadian Private Equity Partners.
More than 99% holders of multiple and limited voting shares voted in favor of the deal, giving them $3.60 in cash per share, as well as non-transferable contingent cash entitlements to 70% of the potential net proceeds from the settlement of certain outstanding litigation.
CINAR is facing three lawsuits over allegations the company fraudulently obtain tax credits by using Canadian names on scripts written by American writers.
"I believe this arrangement provides fair value to shareholders and I am pleased they have voted in such overwhelming majority to accept it," said Robert Despres, CINAR's chairman of the board. "Today's vote brings the company one step closer to completion of the arrangement which will place CINAR in the hands of investors who have the experience and resources to successfully continue its development."
"The eventual conclusion of this arrangement represents many months and countless hours of hard work for CINAR's board, management and personnel," said Stuart Snyder, CINAR's president/ceo. "I want to thank everyone for their tremendous efforts."
Provided that the arrangement receives the final approval of the Quebec Superior Court on Feb. 19, the sale is expected to be complete on Feb. 27.
Although Hirsh and Taylor have indicated many execs will be retained, restructuring is expected soon and a likely name change for the company best known for producing the long-term animated hits, ARTHUR and CALLOU.