Share this entry

Share this page

greenmail

Line breaks: green|mail
Pronunciation: /ˈɡriːnmeɪl
 
/

Definition of greenmail in English:

noun

[mass noun] Stock Exchange
The practice of buying enough shares in a company to threaten a takeover, forcing the owners to buy them back at a higher price in order to retain control.
Example sentences
  • I was acquiring businesses through leveraged buyouts and greenmail which with more forethought I would have left well alone.
  • They bought off would-be raiders with greenmail.
  • By the mid-1990s, state legislatures had taken the lead in opposing greenmail through legislation.

Origin

1980s: blend of green and blackmail.

Derivatives

greenmailer

1
noun
Example sentences
  • That would eliminate any incentive for greenmailers to acquire stock unless they intended to make a formal takeover bid.
  • Conversely, there's the remote chance of a higher bid if greenmailers try to frustrate the 90 per cent acceptance condition.
  • They were given positions of power within the company and provided enough financial support to make warding off the greenmailers possible.

Definition of greenmail in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day cumbersome
Pronunciation: ˈkʌmbəs(ə)m
adjective
large or heavy and therefore difficult to carry…