take·​over | \ˈtāk-ˌō-vər \

Definition of takeover 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: the action or an act of taking over

take over


Definition of take over (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to assume control or possession of or responsibility for military leaders took over the government

intransitive verb

1 : to assume control or possession

2 : to become dominant

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Examples of takeover in a Sentence


The government experienced a military takeover in 2002. the new government's high-handed takeover of private industries


I'll take over for her until she gets back from her morning break. took over the responsibility of caring for the animals
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The latest results included a €35.6 million loss tied to Ryanair’s takeover of Austrian carrier Laudamotion in August. Robert Wall, WSJ, "Ryanair Earnings Hit by Staff and Fuel Costs," 22 Oct. 2018 But the product debuted with a list price of $300 per two-pack, still triple the price of what the product cost prior to Mylan’s 2007 takeover. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "Years after Mylan’s epic EpiPen price hikes, it finally gets a generic rival," 17 Aug. 2018 Anheuser-Busch agreed to a takeover by giant Belgian brewer InBev. BostonGlobe.com, "This day in history," 13 July 2018 Mayor John Street and Governor Mark Schweiker agree to a state takeover of city schools. Kristen A. Graham, Philly.com, "Notable moments during 17 years of Philly's School Reform Commission," 29 June 2018 Deal went to court seeking to have the cousin named as heir to the Maier estate, leading to the takeover by the public administrator. Jason Meisner, chicagotribune.com, "Genealogical investigation uncovers 10 heirs of famed Chicago street photographer Vivian Maier," 26 June 2018 Guests also will notice more room for its fresh fish and Japanese groceries, thanks to a takeover of next door’s Tirana Cafe and the space behind it, a former hair salon. Rene Wisely, Detroit Free Press, "New shops, breweries coming to Oakland County downtowns," 4 June 2018 According to the Wall Street Journal‘s sources, China’s State Administration for Market Regulation will give its approval to the takeover within days. David Meyer, Fortune, "The World's Biggest Ever Semiconductor Merger May Be Back on Track, Thanks to a China Thaw," 28 May 2018 While the exact nature of that conversation remains in dispute, the Redstone entity that controls CBS, National Amusements, has made clear its categorical opposition to any takeover. James B. Stewart, New York Times, "A Battle for Control of CBS, With Far-Reaching Consequences," 16 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Hackers can take over accounts of existing Venmo users and pilfer their money. Peter Rudegeair, WSJ, "Venmo Caught Off Guard by Fraudsters," 24 Nov. 2018 Crooks can also take over targets’ cellular numbers by masquerading as the rightful owners. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Database leak exposes millions of two-factor codes and reset links sent by SMS," 16 Nov. 2018 The model will take over the coveted position, last held by Heidi Klum, joined by an all-star cast including Christian Siriano, Nina Garcia, Elaine Welteroth, and Brandon Maxwell. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Newlyweds Karlie Kloss and Joshua Kushner Step Out in NYC Following Their Surprise Wedding," 24 Oct. 2018 Matt Vogel, who does Count von Count on Sesame Street as well as a bunch of other Muppet characters (including my favorite, the evil Constantine from Muppets Most Wanted), will be taking over the role of Big Bird. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "How Caroll Spinney Amassed a Large Net Worth and So Much More From 'Sesame Street'," 17 Oct. 2018 The English actor, perhaps best known for his dual roles of Frank and Black Jack Randall on Outlander, will be taking over for Matt Smith as the Queen's husband in seasons three and four of the series. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Netflix Releases First Photo of Outlander's Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip in The Crown," 28 Aug. 2018 Deadline reports newcomer Jet Jurgensmeyer will take over for original actor Flynn Morrison, as the producers decided that an older child would create more interesting and flexible plot opportunities. Emma Dibdin, Country Living, "Here’s Your First Look at the 'Last Man Standing' Reboot's New Boyd Baxter," 9 Aug. 2018 In season three, Olivia Colman will take over the iconic role. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Claire Foy Says She Was Never Actually Given That Back Pay She Was Reportedly Promised for 'The Crown'," 29 July 2018 The restaurant will take over the 6,700-square-foot building formerly occupied by Famous Dave’s. Anna Muckerman, baltimoresun.com, "New restaurant Jose Tequilas Mexican Grill and Cantina coming to Owings Mills Square," 13 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'takeover.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of takeover


1910, in the meaning defined above


1618, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Statistics for takeover

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for takeover

The first known use of takeover was in 1618

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More Definitions for takeover



Financial Definition of takeover

What It Is

A takeover is the purchase of a company. A takeover is different from a merger, which occurs when the purchaser and the target both cease to exist and instead form a new, combined company.

How It Works

Let's assume Company XYZ wants to acquire Company ABC. Company XYZ might just start buying ABC shares on the open market, but once Company XYZ acquires 5% of ABC, it must formally (and publicly) declare how many shares it owns to the Securities and Exchange Commission. Company XYZ must also state whether it intends to create an ABC takeover or just hold its existing shares as an investment.

If Company XYZ indeed wants to proceed with the takeover, it will make a tender offer to ABC's board of directors (followed by an announcement to the press). The tender offer will indicate, among other things, how much Company XYZ is willing to pay for ABC and how long ABC shareholders have to accept the offer.

The most common methods of determining the target's value are to look at comparable companies in the industry and to conduct a discounted cash flow analysis, but evaluating other measures such as P/E ratios, price-to-sales ratios, or even replacement costs provides valuable insight. Acquirers often have to pay a premium above the market price of the target company's shares in order to get the shareholders to agree to the takeover.

Once the tender offer is made, ABC can accept the terms of the offer, negotiate a different price, use a "poison pill" or other defense to avert the deal, or find somebody else to sell to who will pay as much or more as XYZ is offering. If ABC accepts the offer, regulatory bodies then review the transaction to ensure the combination does not create a monopoly or other anticompetitive circumstances within the industries involved. If the regulatory bodies approve the transaction, the parties exchange funds and the deal is closed.

Companies often conduct takeovers with cash, but they also use debt and their own stock as well, and there are often tax consequences associated with each form of currency.

Why It Matters

Takeovers can create a bigger, more competitive, more cost-efficient entities. This synergy -- that is, the idea that the two companies together are more valuable to the shareholders than they are apart -- is elusive, but it is what justifies most takeovers. After all, acquirers always have the much harder option of trying to "grow their own" by starting their own competitive ventures instead of buying someone else's. Targets often succumb to takeovers because at the end of the day, the price is right. And on both sides, a well-executed takeover can be the crowning jewel of a CEO's career.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of takeover

: an occurrence in which a person, company, etc., takes control of something


take·​over | \ˈtāk-ˌō-vər \

Legal Definition of takeover 

: the acquisition of control or possession (as of a corporation) a hostile takeover

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More from Merriam-Webster on takeover

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with takeover

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for takeover

Spanish Central: Translation of takeover

Nglish: Translation of takeover for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of takeover for Arabic Speakers

Comments on takeover

What made you want to look up takeover? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to make faulty or ineffective

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