In a major multifamily real estate investment trust merger, Camden Property Trust, Houston, is acquiring Summit Properties, Charlotte, N.C., for about $1.9 billion, including the assumption of Summit debt.The deal places a value of $31.37 per Summit share, Camden said, based on the closing price of Camden shares on Oct 1. Summit shareholders may opt to receive either $31.20 in cash or 0.6687 of a Camden share per Summit share, the REIT said. "This strategic merger takes both Camden and Summit to the next level in size and potential," said Richard J. Campo, Camden's chairman and chief executive officer. "This merger creates the fifth-largest multifamily public company in the U.S., with a $5.7 billion total market capitalization and $2.9 billion equity market cap." Camden said the aggregate amount of cash issued in the merger to Summit stockholders will be about $434.4 million, and that the merger agreement may be terminated by Summit if the stock consideration payable to Summit shareholders falls below $39.31 per Camden share during the pre-merger period. Following the merger announcement, Summit shares opened at $30.40 on Oct. 5, after closing at $27.84 on the previous day. Camden shares had declined to $45.29 from an Oct. 4 closing of $46.90.

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