(Reuters) - U.S. railcar maker Greenbrier Cos Inc (GBX.N) has rejected a $543 million bid from American Railcar Industries Inc (ARII.O) which is controlled by activist investor Carl Icahn, saying the offer grossly undervalues the company.
But Greenbrier said it remains ready and willing to continue discussions with Icahn, saying it believes that combining the two companies would offer substantial synergies and be beneficial to shareholders of both firms.
American Railcar on Tuesday offered $20 per share for Greenbrier, reviving a nearly five-year old plan to combine the companies.
Greenbrier said in a statement that in previous conversations, Icahn talked about acquiring the company at a price of between $20 and $22 per share in cash.
"The Greenbrier board of directors believes a price range of $20-$22 per share is inadequate, grossly undervalues the company and is not in the best interests of Greenbrier stockholders," the company said.
Icahn reported a 9.99 percent stake in Greenbrier last month that made him its largest shareholder. Icahn Enterprises LP (IEP.O) controls around 55.6 percent of American Railcar according to its most recent filing.
(Reporting by Sakthi Prasad in Bangalore; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Edwina Gibbs)