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Post Holdings, Inc. (POST) announced Tuesday that it will acquire refrigerated food and food services company Bob Evans Farms, Inc. (BOBE) for $1.5 billion, or $77 per share, representing a 5.6% premium to Bob Evans' Monday closing share price.

The definitive deal will "meaningfully enhance" Post's refrigerated side dish offerings, the company said. When the acquisition closes, Post will combine its existing refrigerated egg, potato and cheese operations with Bob Evans to establish a refrigerated retail business within Post.

The deal has already been approved by the boards of both companies and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2018, subject to customary regulatory approval.

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