A diverse holding company,Leucadia National Corporation, New York, N.Y., said it entered into a membership interest purchase agreement withNational Beef Packing Company, LLC,  and its members, to will buy 78.95 percent of National Beef for a net aggregate cash purchase price of $867.9 million to be paid from Leucadia's available cash and investments.

Officials say National Beef, based in Kansas City, Mo., is one of the nation's largest suppliers of fresh and frozen beef and beef by-products for sale to customers in the U.S. and international markets. Its products include boxed beef, ground beef, hides, tallow and other beef and beef by-products. In addition, National Beef sells value-added beef products including branded boxed beef, case-ready beef, portion control beef and further processed hides. National Beef markets its products to retailers, foodservice providers, distributors, further processors and the U.S. military.

The current owners of National Beef,U.S. Premium Beef, LLC,NBPCo Holdings, LLCandTimothy Klein, National Beef's chief executive officer, will continue as minority owners of National Beef after the deal is completed.

Leucadia said it expects to complete the transactions by the end of 2011 and anticipates National Beef will continue to operate in the same manner and with the same management .

Leucadia's principal businesses include manufacturing (lumber, plastic products), land-based contract oil and gas drilling, gaming entertainment, real estate, medical product development, and winery operations in the United States and internationally.