Federal Communications Commission chairman Ajit Pai sought approval from his colleagues to order the go-ahead for Nexstar Media Group's acquisition of Tribune Media, an American media conglomerate headquartered in Chicago, in a $6.4bn tie-up.
Last month, the US Justice Department approved the deal, saying the companies must divest television stations in 13 markets to resolve antitrust concerns. Pai's order circulated Friday needs the consent of a majority of the five-member FCC.
Guggenheim Partners, Moelis & Co, Covington & Burling, Debevoise & Plimpton and Latham & Watkins are advising Tribune Media. Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Kirkland & Ellis and Wiley Rein are advising Nexstar.
Kaman, an American aerospace company, closed its $700m sale of Distribution Segment to Littlejohn & Co, a Greenwich, Connecticut-based investment firm. The deal was announced in June 2019.
"For Kaman this transaction represents an important milestone in our portfolio transformation and the culmination of a thorough strategic review undertaken by our Board of Directors," said Neal J. Keating, Chairman, President and CEO of Kaman. "Our strengthened balance sheet will better position the Company to invest in and build our higher margin, higher growth aerospace and engineered products businesses to enhance shareholder value."
Gibson Dunn & Crutcher advised Littlejohn & Co. JP Morgan, Robert W Baird and K&L Gates advised Kaman. Fried Frank advised JP Morgan. Antares Capital, BMO and Jefferies provided debt financing.
Kinepolis, a Belgian cinema chain, acquired Michigan-based MJR Digital Cinemas, a movie theater chain, for $152m. The transaction sees Kinepolis crossing the Canadian border to enter the US market.
Eddy Duquenne, CEO Kinepolis Group: "I'm very proud we have the opportunity to expand our investment in Canada to the US. The successful acquisition of Landmark Cinemas Canada shows we can successfully implement our corporate strategy in another continent and another time zone. The acquisition of MJR fits perfectly into our expansion strategy: geographically, it adjoins Canada; the movie theaters are all multi- or megaplexes, and we also acquire an important real estate position. I'm particularly enthusiastic about the eagerness of the current MJR team to implement Kinepolis' management vision and customer concepts at the MJR cinemas."
PJ Solomon and Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn advised MJR.
KBS Strategic Opportunity REIT, a non-traded Real Estate Investment Trust, agreed to acquire Reven Housing REIT, which engages in the acquisition and ownership of portfolios of occupied single-family rental properties in the United States, for $57m in cash.
Keith Hall, KBS Strategic Opportunity REIT Chief Executive Officer, stated, "This acquisition further expands SOR's commitment to the single-family rental business, which is an area of significant potential growth. The asset class is a strong fit for our investor base, and we look forward to exploring further acquisitions."
RBC Capital Markets and Greenberg Traurig are advising Reven. DLA Piper is advising KBS Strategic Opportunity REIT.
Fortress Investment Group, an investment management firm based in New York City, acquired assets of RAIT Financial Trust, an American Real Estate Investment Trust, for $174m as a part of Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
Following the chapter 11 filing, RAIT will continue to operate as a "debtor-in-possession" under the jurisdiction of the Bankruptcy Court. RAIT expects to file a number of first day motions with the Bankruptcy Court that, among other things, will seek authorization to continue the operations of RAIT in the ordinary course of business during the sale process. RAIT expects to receive court approval for these requests.
M-III Partners, UBS, Drinker Biddle & Reath and Ledgewood advised RAIT. Stroock & Stroock & Lavan and Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor advised Fortress Investment Group.
PSA International completed the acquisition of Penn Terminals, one of the best-equipped, privately owned multipurpose marine terminals on the Eastern Coast of the USA, from Macquarie Infrastructure Partners, a fund managed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“This acquisition represents PSA’s very first foray into the USA. We are delighted to embrace Penn as the newest member of the global PSA family and to be able to participate in its continued growth and expansion. We are committed to partnering the state of Pennsylvania, customers, staff and the local community, as well as key stakeholders, to augment Penn’s capabilities and connectivity in order to better serve the needs of shippers and receivers in the greater US Mid-Atlantic region and beyond,” Tan Chong Meng, Group CEO, PSA International.
Private equity firm Bravia Capital invested in Lightning Technologies, a Michigan-based company revolutionizing shipping pallets. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Durability, weight and technology are three critical components in supply chain logistics that Lightning Technologies has focused on to make it an instant market innovator and leader," said Bharat Bhise, CEO and founder of Bravia Capital. "As a long-time investor in the global cargo and logistics space, I believe this new technology is a game-changer for the Logistics Industry."
Allen & Overy and O’Melveny & Myers abandoned merger talks.
The US merger talks between London-based Allen & Overy and Los Angeles-based O’Melveny & Myers, two global law companies, collapsed after the parties failed to agree on a valuation for the combined business. The two firms had already faced difficult negotiations over governance, the name of the combined company and how to match their differing remuneration structures.
Allen & Overy said that expanding its presence in the US “remains the highest priority” and added that it was still “open to considering opportunities for larger combinations.”
Macquarie nears deal for a majority stake in Netrality. (FS)
An affiliate of Macquarie Group that invests in infrastructure is nearing a deal to buy a majority stake in Netrality Data Centers, which owns and operates data centers in the US. The talks are advanced, and the size of the transaction could not immediately be determined, Bloomberg reported.
Shepherd sold two living communities to Atlas Senior Living.
Shepherd sold Shepherd Living at Savannah Quarters, a 104-unit Independent Living, Assisted Living, and Memory Care community in greater Savannah, Georgia and Shepherd Living at The Range, a 104-unit Independent Living, Assisted Living and Memory Care community in Madison, Alabama, to Birmingham-based Atlas Senior Living. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We're excited to see where they take our young communities and concepts," says Naveen Trehan, co-Founder and Chairman of Shepherd's portfolio. "Atlas has a real passion for seniors and a history of dedicated and compassionate leadership."
German real estate firm TLG Immobilien acquired a 10% stake in Aroundhome, a Luxembourg-based real estate company, for €1bn ($1.1bn). The companies also began talks about a potential merger deal.
Sascha Hettrich, FRICS, chairman of the supervisory board of TLG, said: "Whilst there are various ways to grow a company, the best is to combine forces with leading market players in the same field. Therefore, our strategy was to look for the industry partner who ideally fits with TLG, which has led to the acquisition of an initial 9.99% stake in Aroundtown and an option to further increase the stake up to 14.99%. We welcome working with Aroundtown towards a future merger of the two companies and creating one of the largest commercial real estate firms in Europe with a focus on top tier cities in Germany and the Netherlands."
Reuters reported that an Italian court ruled in favor of a petition filed by French media giant Vivendi to vote against Mediaset's reorganization plan, although the decision was not enough to scupper the deal. Vivendi said it wanted to vote against Mediaset's plan because a bylaw of the new group's structure would exclude it from voting at shareholder meetings.
The ruling only applies to the 9.6% stake Vivendi directly holds in Mediaset, as two-thirds of the French group's 29% total stake is currently held by an arms-length trust called Simon Fiduciaria, which has so far been barred from voting by an Italian court. That leaves the French group with 9.99% direct voting rights.
Banca IMI, JP Morgan, Citigroup and Mediobanca are advising Mediaset.
FPE Capital, a growth equity investor in UK technology-enabled companies, invested in UK-based Kallik, a global leader in label compliance systems. Financial terms were not disclosed.
David Barbour, Managing Partner at FPE, commented: "FPE is delighted to have completed the buyout of Kallik, a great business addressing compliance-driven customer demand at a global scale. Our expertise is focussed on delivering accelerated growth in companies operating in large markets that are experiencing change. We recognize those characteristics here and are excited to be partnering with Ashley, David and John to take advantage of that shift."
Acuity Advisors, Gateley and Claritas Tax advised Kallik and the sellers. CIL Management Consultants, Sales Forensics, Continuum Ventures, RSM and Charles Russell advised FPE Capital.
Tencent-backed Huya, a leading game live streaming platform in China, invested $30m in MTG's portfolio company Turtle Entertainment, the largest e-sports company in the world.
"We are excited to announce this term sheet for an important strategic partnership which provides us with a strong partner in Huya to pave the way for a successful ESL expansion into the thriving Chinese e-sports and gaming market in due time," says MTG President and CEO Jørgen Madsen Lindemann.
S&P Global Platts, the leading independent provider of information, benchmark prices and analytics for the commodities and energy markets, agreed to acquire Live Rice Index, a global provider of information and benchmark price assessments for the rice industry. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Martin Fraenkel, president of S&P Global Platts: "Rice is the most important grain for human consumption worldwide, directly feeding more people than any other crop. This is an exciting time for S&P Global Platts to bring increased transparency to the global rice market, which is forecast to grow strongly over the next 30 years underpinned by robust production and consumption fundamentals. Our acquisition of LRI, a recognized authority in the rice industry, is part of our multi-year strategic investment in agriculture markets, offering our customers leading data and insight to help them make decisions with conviction."
Swiss Medical Network, a Swiss group of private hospitals, acquired Klinik Belair, a medical clinic in Schaffhausen, from Hirslanden, Switzerland's largest private hospital group. Financial terms were not disclosed.
One of the reasons for the sale of the Klinik Belair for Hirslanden was its lack of direct connection to another acute hospital, which can be made possible by Swiss Medical Network in close cooperation with doctors. Hirslanden and Swiss Medical Network said they are delighted to have been able to find a perfect solution for the continued operation of Klinik Belair in Schaffhausen.
Private equity firm Comhar Capital invested in Fabriweld Tubular Steel Products, an international design and manufacturing company that provides high-quality steel, aluminum and polymer product solutions. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Craig Wilkinson, MD Comhar, said: "The opportunity to invest in Fabriweld was a long time in the making but that in itself provided some comfort that we were joining with a strong reputable company with an established customer base. Without doubt, Fabriweld has the potential to develop further, expand into new markets, increase its international footprint and continue its success story."
Syngenta, one of the world’s leading agriculture companies, acquired Cropio Group, an agriculture technology company with approximately 35 full-time employees. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Greg Meyers, Chief Information and Digital Officer, Syngenta, said, “This acquisition marks a turning point in Syngenta’s digital strategy for agriculture. Cropio is a leading player in the Eastern European digital agriculture market, and Syngenta is gaining a hub for Ag-Tech innovation in Europe that will help increase farmer sustainability, productivity, efficiency and profitability. We anticipate significant opportunities for collaboration across the other Syngenta digital assets.”
Swedish buyout firm EQT launches IPO. (FS)
EQT Partners confirmed its plans to list in Stockholm. The private equity firm will target a €4bn ($4.5bn) valuation and will issue at least €500m ($558m) of new shares with existing shareholders selling parts of their stakes in the IPO, Reuters reported.
“The majority of our global competitors have strengthened their balance sheet either by listing or through private transactions, and we see it as a prerequisite to competing as a major global player.” Christian Sinding, EQT chief executive.
Permira drops pursuit of UK accounting firm Cogital. (FS)
Permira dropped its pursuit of a stake in CogitalGroup, jeopardizing a sale process for the UK accounting firm, Bloomberg reported.
Permira walked away from exclusive negotiations following disagreements over price with Cogital’s owner, rival buyout firm Hg. A deal could have valued London-based Cogital at about £1bn ($1.2bn)
Sky and Liberty Global closing in on a full-fiber deal.
Sky, a British media and telecommunications conglomerate, is reportedly in discussions with Liberty Global, a multinational telecommunications company, to invest in a new full-fiber network to be built by Liberty Global that would substantially raise pressure on BT in the UK broadband market. Virgin Media, the UK’s second-largest telecoms network owned by Liberty Global, would be the anchor tenant for the business.
LionTree is advising Liberty Global.
Deutsche Post received expressions interest to acquire StreetScooter.
Deutsche Post, a German multinational package delivery and supply chain management company, received expressions of interest from potential partners for StreetScooter, its electric van business.
“We see broad interest along the entire value chain,” Board member Tobias Meyer said, adding that Deutsche Post was in contact with car parts makers, electric vehicle manufacturers and operators.
Goldman Sachs is advising Deutsche Post.
Continental looking to spin-off Powertrain.
Continental, a German automotive manufacturing company, is looking to prepare a spin-off of its powertrain division as an alternative to a potential partial listing of the unit.
"The Executive Board of Continental has decided to consider a spin-off of up to 100% of the Powertrain division with subsequent listing as an additional alternative to the potential partial IPO," the company said in a statement.
Julius Baer's Kairos looking to make acquisitions in Italy.
Kairos Investment Management, the Italian subsidiary of Julius Baer, is looking to make acquisitions in Italy. Julius Baer recently deviced not to sell the unit, after it had put Kairos under strategic review due to poor fund performance in 2018.
"There is a consolidation in Italy. In the past we made acquisitions, including Kairos, therefore we will look at other companies," Julius Baer's European head Yves Robert-Charrue said.
Lyxor loses $7.3bn of ETF outflows amid sale speculation. (FS)
Large outflows have hit Lyxor from its $67.8bn exchange-traded funds business amid speculation that its parent Société Générale could sell the Paris-based asset manager. Lyxor would provide any potential buyer with a strong position in Europe’s fast-growing ETF industry, where it ranks as the third-largest player behind BlackRock and DWS.
Investors, however, pulled $7.3bn from Lyxor’s ETF unit, by far the biggest outflows sustained by any ETF provider globally this year.
Wirecard signs cooperation agreement with SoftBank's Brightstar.
Wirecard signed a memorandum of understanding with SoftBank’s Brightstar and anticipates significant transaction volume out of the deal. Under the agreement, digital financial services via a Brightstar platform are expected to be handled by Wirecard as the preferred payment service provider, Reuters reported.
“Together, we expect to bring a variety of new solutions to the mobile services market on a global scale, and we anticipate significant transaction volume out of this deal,” Wirecard said in a statement.
SSE launches a sale of North Sea gas fields in a single package.
British energy provider SSE kicked off the process to sell its 140m cubic feet per day portfolio of North Sea gas fields in a single package. The package includes a 20% stake in the Total-operated Greater Laggan Area in the West of Shetlands, including the Shetland Gas Plant, and the Bacton Catchment Area in the Southern North Sea.
It includes around 30m barrels of oil equivalent in reserves and the potential for further reserves growth in the Glendronach prospect in the Greater Laggan Area.
China Merchants in talks to invest in CMA CGM Port Assets.
China Merchants Group is in talks to invest in port assets owned by French shipping company CMA CGM as the state-owned firm seeks to diversify geographically and boost capacity.
Cox & Kings said to weigh sale of European hotel chain Meininger.
Cox & Kings, the Indian travel company, is exploring a potential sale of European hospitality chain Meininger Hotels as it seeks to cut debt. The company is working with Lazard to gauge interest from potential suitors for Berlin-based Meininger, Bloomberg reported.
Antin explores the sale of Dutch network owner Eurofiber. (FS)
Antin Infrastructure Partners is exploring a sale of Dutch fiber-optic network owner Eurofiber that could value the company at more than €1.5bn ($1.7bn).
The Europe-focused private equity firm has had preliminary contact with potential buyers, including infrastructure funds, to gauge their interest.
Sanjeev Gupta battles Rio Tinto over $50m payment.
Sanjeev Gupta, the former commodities trader, dubbed Britain’s “savior of steel,” is in dispute with Rio Tinto over the final payment for Europe’s largest aluminum smelter.
The wrangle between the Indian-born industrialist and Rio is over about $50m, which the mining group demanded from Liberty to settle the transaction.
There is also concern among lenders who provided a $350m loan to finance the deal. One of the banks has sold off its chunk of debt, FT reported.
Rivals circle beleaguered Telit Communications.
A Chinese tech firm with links to the largest shareholder in scandal-hit Telit Communications is carrying out a multi-million-pound equity fundraising amid speculation it may launch an offer for the AIM-listed business.
Sunsea Telecommunications, which is listed in China, aims to raise about £170m ($207m) from investors by issuing new shares. Sunsea and Telit are ‘internet of things’ companies – designing and making devices allowing machines to communicate with each other.
Azot will buy the debt of the Ammonium plant from VEB for $900m.
Roman Trotsenko will become an investor in the Ammonium ammonia and nitrogen fertilizer plant in Mendeleevsk, as VEB agreed to sell for $900m the claim on a loan for the construction of a plant to Azot, which is part of Trotenko's SDS Azot.
Foresight launches £100m East of England Fund. (FS)
Foresight Group, an independent infrastructure and small-cap private equity investment manager, has launched its fifth regional private equity fund, which will focus on companies in the thriving SME sector in the East of England.
Cornerstoned by the Cambridgeshire Pension Fund, the fund will target long term value growth for investors and provide a permanent pool of capital to fund businesses in the region and beyond. The fund breaks new ground as an evergreen pool of patient capital targeted at the small company private equity sector in the UK.
Charter Hall, an Australian funding company, and Abacus Group, a real estate investment management company, agreed to acquire Australian Unity Office Fund, a real estate investment trust company, for $335m.
"The purchase of the fund will work with the repositioning of Abacus to focus on longer-dated leases or income recurring assets," Steven Sewell, chief executive of Abacus Property, said.
South Korean private equity firm VIG Partners agreed to sell HiParking, a car park management firm, to Humax, a consumer electronics company, for $140m.
VIG managing partner Chulmin Lee said, "HiParking has been a market-leading player in the parking management industry in Korea since VIG's acquisition. VIG further solidified its dominant position by acquiring the competitor, Wilson Parking Korea (currently named Hi City Parking), in December 2018. VIG was convinced that the parking management service would serve as a bedrock to the mobility platform services in the near future."
Udaan, the fastest Indian startup to achieve the coveted unicorn status, has raised $373m from new and existing investors in an ongoing Series D round.
The business-to-business online marketplace has raised funds from Altimeter Capital, GGV Capital, and Hillhouse Capital, besides existing investors DST Global and Lightspeed Venture Partners. The latest fund infusion more than doubles Udaan’s valuation to $2.3bn.
“The capital is being raised will be used to build the supply chain network and scale up the non-banking finance business,” Udaan said.
AirTrunk looking for new investors. (FS)
Private equity-backed AirTrunk, a technology company developing and operating data centers, is looking for new investors to help fund capital-heavy projects as it accelerates an ambitious Asia-Pacific growth strategy. Goldman Sachs's merchant banking division, which owns a stake in AirTrunk, started reaching out to potential buyers last week, testing interest in a stake in the rapidly-growing company.
Incitec Pivot announced a strategic review of its Fertilisers Asia Pacific business segment.
Incitec Pivot Fertilisers, the distributor of fertilizers in Australia, started a strategic review of its Asia Pacific unit. The strategic review will assess various options, including a potential sale of the business, demerger, or retaining the business and continuing to invest for growth.
The objective of the strategic review is to maximize shareholder value whilst also having regard to the interests of other stakeholders, including employees, suppliers, and customers.
Temasek, Hillhouse acquire a stake in China’s Aier Eye Hospital for $268m. (FS)
Singapore’s state investment firm Temasek and private equity firm Hillhouse Capital have acquired a 1% stake each in China’s Aier Eye Hospital Group, Deal Street Asia reported. The companies acquired a total of 62m shares in the Aier Eye worth about CNY1.9bn ($268m).
Proceeds from the share sale will be used to acquire properties for Aier to build hospitals. The capital will also be used to accelerate the establishment of professional eye health insurance companies.
Tikehau Capital and T&D Insurance Group form a strategic partnership. (FS)
Tikehau Capital, alternative asset management and investment group, and T&D Insurance Group, a major Japanese insurance company, have agreed to enter into a business and capital alliance.
This agreement enables Tikehau Capital to enhance its presence in Japan and gain greater proximity to Japanese financial institutions, which have a growing interest in gaining exposure to European private markets. More specifically, Tikehau Capital will extend its client reach to Japanese pension investors, leveraging the know-how and network of T&D Asset Management with this type of client.
Social Bella secures $40m Series B funding co-led by Temasek, EV Growth. (FS)
Indonesian beauty platform Social Bella, known by its Sociolla e-commerce brand, has announced the closing of its Series D funding round of $40m, co-led by Singapore’s Temasek Holdings and venture capital fund EV Growth. Others participating in the round include new investors EDBI, Pavilion Capital and Jungle Ventures. With the new funding, the company says it looks to expand its business reach in the country through improved technology.
“We will invest more in building our digital asset, which is SOCO. This will enable us to expand into a wider segment, accelerate our business further, and bring a more comprehensive beauty service.” John Rasjid, Social Bella co-founder and CEO.
Connect the World of Dealmakers
Expand your network of fellow Dealmakers by inviting your colleagues and coworkers.