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SEATTLE—David Murdock is now in control of Castle & Cooke Inc., the Los Angeles-based Real Estate firm of which he is chairman. Flexi-Van Leasing, the private firm through which Murdock mounted the buyout offer, now owns approximately 92% of Castle & Cooke Inc. thanks to a successful tender offer during which the purchase price was raised twice. For the top price of $19.25 a share, Castle Acquisition Co., a wholly owned subsidiary of Flexi-Van Leasing, received tenders of approximately 89% of the Castle & Cooke shares not already owned by Flexi-Van Leasing, Inc.

Approximately 11.17 million shares were tendered, including 1.07 million controlled by Bill Gates’ personal investment firm, Cascade Investment, giving Murdock a total of more than 15 million shares. Castle & Cooke’s holdings include the Hawaiian island of Lanai where Gates was married six years ago.

It is expected that the merger will be completed in late August or early September, 2000. Castle & Cooke’s stock closed Monday at $19, off 25 cents from Friday’s close. The stock reached a 52-week high of $19.938 on July 10. It’s 52-week low came in early February, when shares traded at $11.75.

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