Kemper Corp. named its price Tuesday: $65 a share.
The insurance and investment company described the figure as a target to determine whether it should be sold a year from now. But some analysts called it a counteroffer to General Electric Co.'s $55-a-share takeover bid.
“I think they’re setting a floor on what they think they’re worth in value, and it’s up to GE to respond to that,” said Michael Lewis of Dean Witter, Discover & Co.
Kemper shareholders will vote on GE’s proposed takeover at Kemper’s annual meeting next Wednesday.
Kemper Chairman David Mathis urged shareholders in a letter to reject GE’s bid and be patient with the company’s plan to boost its stock price. He said that if Kemper’s stock fails to reach $65 on at least 10 of 20 consecutive trading days by May 26, 1995, the board will propose that Kemper be sold to the highest bidder.