Definitions

from The American HeritageĀ® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An antitakeover maneuver in which the target firm purchases the raider's stock at a price above that available to other stockholders.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Profiting from an attempted hostile takeover by forcing the target company to buy back the hostile bidder's shares at an inflated price.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act, performed by a publicly traded corporation, of paying a corporate raider to give up a takeover attempt, by buying the shares of stock he owns; also, the threat posed by corporate raiders to take over a company unless their stocks are purchased by the company at a price giving them a large profit.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. (corporation) the practice of purchasing enough shares in a firm to threaten a takeover and thereby forcing the owners to buy those shares back at a premium in order to stay in business

Etymologies

green, money + (black)mail.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Blend of greenback and blackmail (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Some call it "greenmail" - blackmail cloaked in green.

    SacBee -- Latest News

  • Despite his denials, he has taken greenmail, which is hardly a service to the 47 million American stockholders with average incomes of $37,000 whom he claims to represent.

    Creative Capitalism

  • The deal included the paying of "greenmail" to so called "funds" that benefit the "community" as well as the usual deals with the local unions politicians like Garcetti are beholden to.

    Archive 2006-06-01

  • Such corporate restructurings, recapitalizations or mergers with "white knights," unlike the payment of "greenmail" to save managers 'jobs, are ultimately motivated by the same "straightforward economic forces" as the takeovers themselves.

    Junk-Bond Finance

  • In case you want to know why tickets and food are so expensive in the Disney Parks, you can thank these ambulance chasing lawyers whose only goal in life is to run 'greenmail' lawsuits hoping Disney will conclude that it is cheaper to write a check instead of fighting for what is right.

    SplicedFeed

  • One of the sources likened it to "greenmail," the Wall Street term that refers to payments made to hostile investors to go away.

    Boston Business News - Local Boston News | Boston Business Journal

  • The Sports Business Journal story, citing sources, suggested that what Kroenke was attempting in terms of a fee from Khan might be construed as "greenmail," a Wall Street term for payments made to hostile investors to go away.

    STLtoday.com Top News Headlines

  • He compared the settlement to the "greenmail" that companies paid billionaire Icahn in the 1980s so he would sell shares and walk away from his takeover attempts.

    Ackman's Group Exits Stuyvesant Town Investment With $45 Million Intact - Bloomberg

  • First District Supervisor Rocky Rockholm, who placed this item on the agenda, went so far as to call PLAs "greenmail," which for the uninitiated means he feels such documents are used as a form of economic blackmail.

    Auburn Journal - Top Stories

  • Before that, in the 80's we had "greenmail", a smaller housing bubble and Milken et al. This got me thinking about the railroads and stories about how people would start building parallel lines just to get the big boys to buy them out.

    Angry Bear

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