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VOL. 38 | NO. 3 | Friday, January 17, 2014

Cracker Barrel to hold special meeting in April

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LEBANON (AP) - Cracker Barrel says it will hold a special meeting in April so that it can avoid having one of its activist shareholders seek a special meeting.

The restaurant operator said Tuesday that Sardar Biglari, who controls the vote of 19.9 percent of its stock, was planning to call a special meeting to vote on a proposal that Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc. "pursue all potential extraordinary transactions, including the sale of the company."

Biglari has tried unsuccessfully to become a Cracker Barrel board member three times. He also previously wanted to call a special meeting to vote on a proposal that Cracker Barrel pay a $20 per share special dividend. The Lebanon, Tenn., company said that it voluntarily put that proposal on its annual meeting ballot last year to avoid the cost and distraction of a special meeting in that instance. The special dividend proposal was defeated.

Cracker Barrel said Tuesday that it understands Biglari will likely be able to meet the 20 percent threshold required to call a special meeting on the proposal for the company to consider options including a potential sale.

As a result, Cracker Barrel said it will hold a special meeting on April 23.

Its stock slipped 61 cents to $102.60 in morning trading Tuesday. Cracker Barrel has 625 company-owned restaurants in 42 states.