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IRC shareholders approve Royal Gold offer

Gold surged in Europe Wednesday morning

ARND WIEGMANN/Arnd Weigmann/Reuters

International Royalty Corp. says shareholders have approved a takeover agreement with resource royalty company Royal Gold Inc. .

IRC said Tuesday it expects the takeover to be concluded by Feb. 22, once the Ontario Superior Court of Justice gives its approval.

In January, Toronto-based Franco-Nevada Corp. extended a hostile takeover bid for IRC, arguing that its all-cash offer of $6.75 per share trumped Royal Gold's offer of $7.45 in cash or 0.1385 common shares or a combination of both in a deal valued at $749-million when it was announced Dec. 18.

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Franco-Nevada said its all-cash offer, worth $639-million (U.S.), was more valuable than Royal Gold's, which is dependent on the value of that company's shares.

The hostile bid was set to expire Friday, but Franco-Nevada said it will withdraw it now since IRC's shareholders have approved the Royal Gold agreement.

IRC shares were unchanged at $6.81 in early afternoon trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Royal Gold shares gained 57 cents to $46.35 and Franco-Nevada shares gained 53 cents to $28.03.

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