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The Deal: Murdock Clinches $1.6B Dole Buyout

In 1995 Castle & Cooke was spun off as a real estate company, while Dole remained focused on fruits and vegetables. Murdock took Castle & Cooke private for about $600 million in 2000, according to The Deal Pipeline. At the time, he was chairman of both companies.

Murdock's dealings with Castle & Cooke left him in control of 98% of the Hawaiian island of Lanai, which he sold to software tycoon Larry Ellison for a reported $500 million to $600 million on June 21, 2012. The price tag was about what Murdock paid to take Castle & Cooke private in 2000.

As of March 23, according to the 10-Q filing, Dole had about $101 million in cash and cash equivalents, nearly $1.9 billion in assets held-for-sale -- which includes the proceeds likely gained from the $1.7 billion sale in September of its packaged foods and Asian fresh produce business to Itochu -- and about $1.6 billion in long-term debt. About $461 million in liabilities are connected to the assets held-for-sale, also according to the 10-Q.

Dole, which traces its roots back more than 150 years to pineapple plantations in Hawaii, is a $4.2 billion-sales producer of fruits and vegetables.

Company chief executive David DeLorenzo left Dole in February when the Itochu deal closed, a move that pushed chairman Murdock into the CEO role.

Written by Richard Collings.
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