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EGL Gets Sweetened Bid From Apollo, Shares Rise

Shipping company EGL Inc., which is the subject of a bidding war, said on Monday that private equity firm Apollo Management LP raised its offer and the bid is superior to a revised one from a rival management-led buyout group.

Shares of EGL rose.

Apollo, which is seeking to buy the company through its U.K.-based CEVA Group unit, raised its offer to $1.95 billion, or $47.50 per share, from about $1.87 billion or $46 per share. It is the latest step in a five-month takeover battle.

On Friday, EGL had received an increased offer of about $1.9 billion, or $46.25 per share, from a bidding group led by Chief Executive and Chairman James Crane.

Apollo also would cut the termination fee EGL would have to pay it under certain circumstances to $20 million from $30 million. In addition, Apollo would raise the termination fee it would pay to EGL to $40 million if it could not obtain financing and to $60 million if there were a "willful breach" by Apollo of the merger agreement.

EGL said a special committee of board members viewed Apollo's offer as superior. The Crane group has until May 23 to discuss and negotiate a revised proposal, it said.

Crane first made an offer to buy EGL for $36 a share in January.