SAN DIEGO and BIRMINGHAM, Ala., June 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Shareholder rights attorneys at Robbins Arroyo LLP are investigating the merger of Colonial Properties Trust (NYSE: CLP) and Mid-America Apartment Communities, Inc. (NYSE: MAA). On June 3, 2013, the companies announced the signing of a definitive merger agreement under which Colonial Properties Trust and MAA will merge, creating a publicly traded, multifamily REIT.
Robbins Arroyo LLP's investigation focuses on whether the board of directors at Colonial Properties Trust is undertaking a fair process to obtain maximum value and adequately compensate its shareholders in the merger.
Is the Merger Best for Colonial Properties Trust and Its Shareholders?Under the terms of the agreement, each Colonial Properties Trust common share will be converted into 0.36 of a newly issued MAA common share, valued at $24.47. As an initial matter, the $24.47 merger consideration is significantly below the target price of $26.00 set by an analyst at Sandler O'Neill & Partners, L.P. since April 27, 2012. Further, on April 25, 2013, Colonial Properties Trust released its financial results for the first quarter 2013, reflecting an increase in both multifamily same-property net operating income by 6.8% and multifamily same-property revenue by 5.2% compared to the first quarter 2012. Further, Colonial Properties Trust ended the quarter with multifamily same-property physical occupancy of 96.1%. In announcing the results, Thomas H. Lowder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, commented, "Simplified and stronger best describe the company and the progress we have made over the past few years. … Our multifamily development pipeline is creating significant value for our shareholders, while the disposition of our commercial assets continues to strengthen our balance sheet and simplify the company." Given these facts, the firm is examining Colonial Properties Trust's board of directors' decision to merge with MAA now rather than allow shareholders to continue to participate in the company's continued success and future growth prospects.