updated 10/6/2003 1:38:20 AM ET 2003-10-06T05:38:20

Finland’s Instrumentarium said on Monday investors holding some 96 percent of its shares and votes backed a takeover bid by General Electric, clinching the deal after a delay due to competition concerns.

Instrumentarium said in a statement that shareholders with 95.7 percent of shares and votes had tendered their shares, with the deal to close on October 9 and the stage set for GE to buyout all remaining shareholders.

“GE will make a mandatory redemption offer as soon as possible in accordance with the Finnish Securities Market Act, including the redemption offer required under the Articles of Association of Instrumentarium,” Instrumentarium said.

GE launched the 1.75 billion-euro ($2.05 billion) cash offer in December 2002, and the U.S. firm has won European and U.S. regulatory approval for the deal after agreeing to divest Instrumentarium’s Spacelabs division.

U.S. antitrust enforcers said GE must sell the Ziehm C-arms medical equipment business as well.

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