One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The practice of buying enough shares in a company to threaten a takeover, forcing the owners to buy them back at a higher price in order to retain control.
- ‘They bought off would-be raiders with greenmail.’
- ‘By the mid-1990s, state legislatures had taken the lead in opposing greenmail through legislation.’
- ‘I was acquiring businesses through leveraged buyouts and greenmail which with more forethought I would have left well alone.’
- ‘Within this safe harbor, greenmail, in effect, is legalized.’
- ‘This article develops a model in which greenmail and other forms of management resistance to takeovers can benefit shareholders.’
1980s: blend of green and blackmail.
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