Smithfield Foods Inc.'s largest shareholder says it will vote in favor of a proposed takeover by a Chinese meat producer after failing to find an alternative bidder.
Starboard Value LP said Friday that it believes another bidder could have offered shareholders a better deal but it could not secure an offer under existing time and financial constraints.
Unless another proposal emerges, Starboard plans on voting in favor of the $34-per-share offer for Smithfield made by China's Shuanghui International Holdings Ltd.
Starboard said earlier this month that it would vote against the $4.7 billion deal because it wanted more time to seek other offers that would provide better shareholder value.
The New York-based investment firm owns about 5.7 percent of Smithfield's common stock.
Smithfield shares fell 20 cents to $33.97 in morning trading.
The vote is scheduled for the Sept. 24 shareholders meeting in Richmond.
The Smithfield-based pork company hase promoted the deal as opening the door to substantial increases in exports to China. Critics have voiced worry about persistent problems with food safety in China.