US banana producer Chiquita has said it is starting takeover talks with two Brazilian companies.
That comes after Chiquita’s shareholders voted against its proposed merger with Irish rival Fyffes, which would have created the world’s biggest producer of bananas.
Juice maker Cutrale and investment firm Safra teamed up in August after some Chiquita shareholders expressed dissatisfaction with elements of the Fyffes deal.
The Brazilians have made an all-cash offer of $14.50 a share.
“While we are convinced (Fyffes) would have been a strong merger partner, we will now go forward as competitors,” Chiquita Chief Executive Edward Lonergan said in a statement.
Chiquita’s shares rose on the New York Stock Exchange and Fyffes’ slumped in Dublin.