Hostile Takeover Bid

What is a 'Hostile Takeover Bid'

An attempt to take over a company without the approval of the company's board of directors. When vying for control of a publicly-traded firm, the acquirer attempting the hostile takeover may proceed to bypass board approval in one of two ways typically.

First, the acquirer may attempt to buy enough shares of the company in order to acquire a controlling interest in the firm. Second, the acquirer may instead try to persuade existing shareholders to vote in a new board which will accept the takeover offer.

BREAKING DOWN 'Hostile Takeover Bid'

It is often difficult to acquire a controlling interest in a publicly-traded firm. Such a bid requires a large amount of capital and a good strategy to avoid bidding up the price too high. There are two main tactics employed to acquire a controlling interest. First, the acquirer may make a tender offer to the company's shareholders, pledging to buy shares of the company for a set price above the prevailing market price. Alternatively, an acquirer may wish to accumulate shares by buying directly in the market. However, this buying may cause a sharp increase in the stock price.

In either case, the acquirer must pay a premium over the market price to gain control over the firm.