Tiffany shareholders approve $16.2-bn bid by France's LVMH

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Paris (AFP)

The shareholders of US jewellery company Tiffany gave the green light Tuesday for its acquisition by luxury behemoth LVHM for a sum of $16.2 billion, setting the French firm up to become a power player in fine gems at a time that demand is soaring.

The deal comes after a long wooing campaign by LVMH, already the world's top luxury firm overall, for one of the world's most famous jewellery houses, known for wedding rings and diamonds.

In a statement, LVMH announced that "stockholders of Tiffany & Co have voted overwhelmingly to approve the previously announced merger agreement relating to the proposed acquisition of Tiffany by LVMH."

According to an agreement announced in November, LVMH will pay $135 per share in cash,"in a transaction with an equity value of approximately 14.7 billion euros or $16.2 billion," it said.

"This approval is a significant milestone as we move closer to completing our acquisition of Tiffany, an iconic company with a rich heritage and unique positioning in the global luxury jewelry market," added billionaire Bernard Arnault, the CEO of LVMH.