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Diamond Resorts will pay $700 million for Sunterra Corporation under the terms of a deal announced Monday, March 12.
By Greg Ruland
Larson Newspapers

Diamond Resorts will pay $700 million for Sunterra Corporation under the terms of a deal announced Monday, March 12.

The deal means two Sedona timeshare properties will change hands before the end of June.

Diamond Resorts Chairman and CEO Stephen Cloobeck reassured Sunterra employees working in Sedona about the sale.

?Your jobs are safe,? Cloobeck said.

Few management changes are planned right now, he said.

The sale should bring stability to Sunterra, which has grown in recent years by buying up smaller timeshare companies.

The strategy has led to some instability in upper management, Cloobeck said. The new deal will stabilize things.

Cloobeck said the deal will make publicly traded Sunterra private.

To acquire Sunterra?s outstanding common stock, Diamond Resorts plans to offer shareholders $16 per share, Cloobeck said.

Diamond Resorts plans to make the offer official in the next five days. The offer will remain open for 40 days, Cloobeck said.

Cloobeck said he bought an interest in Sunterra last year, then investigated whether the company made a good target for acquisition.

Sunterra?s brick and mortar assets attracted Cloobeck first, with resort and vacation properties in five countries and seven states.

Cloobeck said the Sunterra timeshare reservation and property management systems make ?one hell of a platform? to operate a timeshare business.

What Sunterra lacks and Diamond Resorts brings to the table is a ?hospitality infrastructure,? he said.

That means Sunterra timeshare owners will now enjoy high-quality amenities standardized throughout the Diamond Resort properties — soaps, lotions, towels, sheets and blankets, among other items, Cloobeck said.

The deal will pay shareholders a 35 percent premium, or increase in value, over the price of their stock as it was on March 8.  

Cloobeck toured Sunterra?s many properties last year, including the four in Sedona, before deciding Sunterra was a good buy.

?It?s a spectacularly beautiful place,? Cloobeck said. ?More people should go there.?

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