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Advance America sale valued at $780 million

Published on Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Advance America, Cash Advance Centers, Inc. and Grupo Elektra, S.A.B. de C.V. today announced that Advance America and subsidiaries of Grupo Elektra have entered into a definitive  agreement under which Grupo Elektra will acquire control of all of the outstanding shares of Advance America, a leading U.S. short-term lender, for $10.50 per share in cash, representing a 32.7 percent premium to the company's closing price of $7.91 today. The total transaction value is approximately $780 million, including the company's outstanding debt as of Dec. 31, 2011.

The acquisition of Advance America represents Grupo Elektra's first major investment in the U.S. financial services market. Advance America is the leading provider of non-bank cash advance services in the U.S., with approximately 2,600 centers in 29 states, the United Kingdom, and Canada. 

Grupo Elektra is Latin America's leading specialty retailer and financial services company, offering world class brands, as well as banking services, credit and other financial products to underserved consumers in Mexico and in other Latin American countries, including Brazil, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, and Peru. Based in Mexico City, Grupo Elektra is publicly traded on the Mexican stock exchange.

If there is not a superior proposal, the transaction is expected to close during the first half of 2012.

It is expected that Patrick O'Shaughnessy, Advance America's President and CEO and other key members of senior management will continue in their roles with the company after the transaction is completed and that Advance America's headquarters will remain in Spartanburg.

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