Liberty Tax has rival for Secaucus’ Vitamin Shoppe

Liberty Tax Inc.’s planned acquisition of Secaucus-based wellness retailer Vitamin Shoppe Inc. may not be such a sure thing, after all.

Vitamin Shoppe provided an update Monday on what is known as the “go-shop” period — part of the merger agreement with Liberty Tax and Valor Acquisition LLC. The company said it had, in fact, received a rival offer to Liberty Tax’s $208 million proposal, during the time when it could seek out such offers under the terms of the original merger agreement.

One undisclosed bidder submitted a proposal during the go-shop period, and Vitamin Shoppe said the new proposal is “reasonably likely” to lead to a better offer — and it intends to negotiate with the bidder going forward.

However, Vitamin Shoppe pointed out that it has not yet determined whether any proposal from the new bidder would actually be superior to the Liberty Tax proposition. The board of directors, in fact, reaffirmed its recommendation in favor of the Liberty Tax deal.

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