Hef to Take Playboy Private

Publisher accepts Hef's latest bid

It's official. Hef's taking Playboy private.

The publisher of Playboy said in a release Monday that it has agreed to a higher offer by founder Hugh Hefner to privatize the company.

The price of $6.15 a share is an 18 percent premium over Friday's closing price and values the company at about $207 million. The bid tops Hefner's offer of $5.50 per share in July. A group led by Penthouse magazine made an offer for Playboy Enterprises Inc. valued at $210 million.

"I believe this agreement will give us the resources and flexibility to return Playboy to its unique position and to further expand our business around the world," said Hefner, Playboy's largest shareholder.

In the past the magazine has struggled with competition from the Web, losing readers and advertisers. In November the company reported a wider third quarter loss than a year ago as its revenue fell 7 percent to $52.1 million.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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