UPDATE 1-LVMH says it controls 98.09 pct of Bulgari

Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:50pm GMT

* LVMH controls 98.09 percent of Bulgari

* Gets 31.31 percent shares from minority shareholders

By Elena Berton

PARIS, Sept 23 (Reuters) - LVMH , the world's biggest luxury group, said on Friday it controls 98.09 percent of Italy's Bulgari after minority shareholders tendered their shares as part of its 3.7 billion euro ($5 billion) offer for the high-end jeweler.

The deal will double LVMH's watch and jewelry business to make up around 10 percent of its sales and about 6 percent of operating profit, according to analysts.

LVMH said that it had received 31.31 percent Bulgari shares from minority shareholders as of Friday, the deadline for its offer.

In March, the jeweler's main shareholder, the Bulgari family, traded its 50.4 percent stake for a 3.5 percent stake in LVMH, while minority shareholders were offered 12.15 euros per share in cash.

Bulgari, established in 1884, had long been seen as a potential takeover target before LVMH's offer.

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