FTAC Olympus Acquisition, a special purpose acquisition company, announced that FTOC shareholders voted to approve the proposed business combination with Payoneer, the commerce technology company powering payments and growth for the new global economy, at its Extraordinary General Meeting held on June 23. The business combination was supported by more than 97.8% of the votes cast at the meeting. Cast votes at the Extraordinary General Meeting were holders of approximately 65.0% of FTOC's issued and outstanding shares.
"Payoneer is a wonderful example - and I'd be hard pressed to reach for another one that is quite as well advanced - in which the adoption curves of consumers and the capacity of the technology have melded and merged quite so well," Betsy Cohen, FTAC Olympus Acquisition Chairman.
Payoneer is advised by PricewaterhouseCoopers, Financial Technology Partners, Davis Polk & Wardwell, Paul Hastings, and ICR. FTAC Olympus Acquisition is advised by Cantor Fitzgerald, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Lewis & Bockius. Financial Advisors are advised by White & Case. TCV is advised by Weil Gotshal and Manges.
Brunswick, an American corporation that develops a wide variety of products, agreed to acquire Navico, a provider of marine electronics and sensors, from investment firms Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Altor for $1.05bn.
"After a strong period of growth, we are very excited about joining the Brunswick family to further strengthen our offering and support our customers going forward. On behalf of everyone at Navico, we cannot wait to begin our journey with Brunswick and share our passion and dedication with their team. By working together, we will be able to deliver a unique and integrated customer experience," Knut Frostad, Navico President and CEO.
Brunswick is advised by JP Morgan, Baker McKenzie and Schjodt. Debt financing is provided by JP Morgan. Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Altor are advised by Carnegie Investment Bank, Goldman Sachs, Sullivan & Cromwell and Wiersholm.
EagleTree Capital, a private equity firm, completed the acquisition of Integreon, a global managed services provider, from NewQuest Capital Partners, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“EagleTree has a long history of investing in companies considered to be best-in-class in their respective industries and helping them accelerate growth, so we are delighted that EagleTree has chosen to partner with us. Integreon will continue to execute on its current strategy, now bolstered by EagleTree’s resources and expertise. We have experienced tremendous expansion in recent years and we look forward to working with EagleTree to continue that growth," Bob Rowe, Integreon CEO.
Integreon was advised by BDA Partners, PricewaterhouseCoopers, William Blair & Co, White & Case and Burke & Company. EagleTree Capital was advised by Alvarez & Marsal, Jones Day and Sard Verbinnen & Co.
BuzzFeed, a tech-powered media company for digital content and commerce for millennial and Gen Z audiences, agreed to go public via a merger with 890 Fifth Avenue Partners, a tech, media and telecom special purpose acquisition company, in a $1.5bn deal.
The deal included a $150m convertible note financing led by Redwood Capital Management and including CrossingBridge Advisors, Cohanzick Management, and Silver Rock Financial.
"BuzzFeed is now the undeniable leader for the next generation of media. We've built a slate of essential brands, loved by the most diverse, engaged, and loyal audience on the Internet. With today's announcement, we're taking the next step in BuzzFeed's evolution, bringing capital and additional experience to our business. I am thrilled to have Adam join our team as we work towards becoming the world's preeminent digital media company," Jonah Peretti, Buzzfeed Founder and CEO.
BuzzFeed is advised by Bank of America, Fenwick & West and Blueshirt Group. 890 Fifth Avenue Partners is advised by Cowen & Company, Craig-Hallum Capital Group and BraunHagey & Borden.
The Tecan Group, a global provider of laboratory instruments and solutions in biopharmaceuticals, forensics and clinical diagnostics, agreed to acquire Paramit, an FDA-registered manufacturer of medical devices and life science instruments, from Altaris, an investment firm focused exclusively on the healthcare industry, for $1bn.
The transaction will create a combined global platform with world-class design, development and manufacturing capabilities and scale to provide unparalleled support to customers in the fastest-growing segments of healthcare. In addition, Paramit will be able to enhance Tecan's service offering for its existing OEM customer base and leverage Tecan's strong commercial channels to further expand Paramit's reach in the European and Asian markets, including China, and beyond.
Paramit is advised by Morgan Stanley and Schiff Hardin. Tecan Group is advised by Bar & Karrer and WilmerHale.
Columbia Banking System, the holding company for Columbia State Bank, agreed to acquire Bank of Commerce Holdings, the holding company for Merchants Bank of Commerce, for $266m.
"We are delighted to welcome Merchants Bank of Commerce clients and employees into the Columbia Bank family, extending our footprint beyond the Northwest and into California. We have tremendous respect for the Merchants Bank of Commerce franchise and view this as an opportunity to expand with an organization that aligns with our long-standing commitment to clients and community. Northern California shares many similarities with the Northwest in both metropolitan and rural markets, making expansion into this region a natural extension of our existing footprint. We appreciate how the management team has grown this franchise in a profitable manner and are excited to have them join Columbia to help manage our California expansion," Clint Stein, Columbia President and CEO.
Bank of Commerce is advised by Raymond James and Miller Nash Graham & Dunn. Columbia is advised by Keefe Bruyette & Woods and Sullivan & Cromwell.
Victoria the international designers, manufacturers and distributors of innovative flooring, agreed to acquire Cali Bamboo Holdings, a provider of wood building products, for $104m.
The integration of Cali with Victoria's existing business will create opportunities for value-creating revenue synergies by expanding Victoria's US distribution, where the group currently sells c. $33m of flooring each year.
Victoria is advised by Berenberg, Peel Hunt, N+1 Singer and Buchanan.
Kingswood Capital-backed Versar, a global project management company, completed the acquisition of the environmental services unit of Black & Veatch, an employee-owned global engineering, procurement, consulting, and construction company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Black & Veatch is a distinguished name in the engineering industry and Versar is pleased and proud to have a unique opportunity to acquire strategic environmental services capabilities to further support our government and country," Dwane Stone, Versar CEO.
Black & Veatch was advised by CC Capital Advisors and Husch Blackwell. Kingswood Capital was advised by Grant Thronton and Goodwin Procter.
Hardwoods Distribution, one of North America's largest distributors of architectural grade building products to the residential, repair and remodel, and commercial construction industries, agreed to acquire Novo Building Products, a manufacturer and value-added distributor of moldings, millwork, stair parts and other specialty building products, from Blue Wolf Capital, a New York-based private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Under George's leadership, the Novo management team executed a set of strategic initiatives that expanded the company's footprint, diversified its product offering and improved its operational performance, creating a substantially larger, more diversified and more efficient enterprise," James Shovlin, Blue Wolf Vice President.
Blue Wolf is advised by Rothschild & Co, Holland & Knight and Joele Frank.
Authentic Brands Group, an American brand management company headquartered in New York, agreed to acquire the Heritage Brands business of PVH, an American clothing company, for $220m.
"This was a difficult decision, as we recognize that our Heritage Brands business provided the resources that laid the foundation and gave us the opportunity to build PVH into one of the largest fashion companies in the world today. We have been proactively optimizing our Heritage Brands business over the past few years, while focusing on allocating resources to higher-return businesses to maximize shareholder value. We believe ABG is well-positioned to develop and invest in these brands for their future success," Stefan Larsson, PVH CEO.
PVH is advised by PJ Solomon and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz.
Alpine Investors-backed ASG, a company that buys and builds vertical SaaS companies, completed the acquisition of Trucker Tools, a digital freight management platform. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"ASG has a proven track record of helping SaaS companies grow and build out reliable, resilient software services delivering enduring value and competitive advantage," Prasad Gollapalli, Trucker Tools Founder and CEO.
Trucker Tools was advised by Raymond James and GNF Communications.
Electronic Arts, an American video game company headquartered in Redwood City, California, agreed to acquire Playdemic, the mobile games studio responsible for Golf Clash, from WarnerMedia, an American multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate, for $1.4bn.
"Playdemic is a team of true innovators, and we're thrilled to have them join the Electronic Arts family. In addition to the ongoing success of Golf Clash, the talent, technology and expertise of Playdemic will be a powerful combination with our teams and IP at Electronic Arts. This is the next step building on our strategy to expand our sports portfolio and accelerate our growth in mobile to reach more players around the world with more great games and content," Andrew Wilson, Electronic Arts CEO.
Electronic Arts is advised by Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom.
Tailwind-backed Core BTS, an IT and managed services provider, agreed to acquire Aptera Software, a Fort Wayne, Indiana-based software development company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are thrilled to welcome the Aptera team to Core BTS and provide our clients with enhanced application development and modernization services to ensure that all facets of their transformation needs are met," Paul Lidsky, Core BTS CEO.
Core BTS is advised by Walker Sands Communications.
Private equity firm Apax Partners agreed to invest in Revolution Prep, a national provider of online academic tutoring and test preparation services. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The pandemic has accelerated the shift from traditional to online learning and we're continuing to see strong demand even as society is re-opening. The attractiveness of on-demand access to professional tutors that can work around students' schedules will only continue and we are thrilled to partner with Apax Digital on the next stage of our journey. Their investment will support an acceleration of our key growth priorities, including scaling up the more affordable small group tutoring format and the strategic expansion into the middle school tutoring segment, supporting families earlier in their academic journeys," Matt Kirchner, Revolution Prep CEO.
Revolution Prep is advised by Lincoln International.
Bedrock Capital led a $102m Series C round in Vercel, a platform to develop, preview and ship websites, from single static pages to apps with billions of dynamic pages, with participation from Accel, CRV, Geodesic Capital, Greenoaks Capital, GV, 8VC, Flex Capital, GGV, Latacora, Salesforce Ventures and Tiger Global.
"Vercel is leading a market transition through which we are seeing the majority of value-add in web and cloud application development being delivered at the front end, closest to the user, where true experiences are made and enjoyed. We are extremely enthusiastic to work closely with Guillermo and the peerless team he has assembled to drive this revolution forward and are very pleased to have been able to lead this round," Geoff Lewis, Bedrock Founder and Managing Partner.
SoftBank Latin America Fund led a $100m Series B round in Habi, a data-driven residential real estate platform, with participation from Inspired Capital, Tiger Global, Homebrew, and 8VC.
"Habi has built an incredible platform that is shaping the future of PropTech in Spanish-speaking Latin America. Utilizing the information collected through its proprietary database, Habi is increasing liquidity in the market to create a better, more efficient residential ecosystem. We seek to invest in companies that are transforming the lives of those in the region and Habi is doing just that. We are excited to collaborate with Brynne, Sebastian and the entire team at Habi as they expand beyond Colombia," Shu Nyatta, SoftBank Managing Partner.
LLR Partners, a private equity firm, led a $100m Series E funding round in JW Player, a video software and data insights platform.
With this financing, JW Player will accelerate product innovation to meet the rapidly changing demands of customers in today’s digital video environment, expand its global go-to-market footprint across sales, marketing and channel partnerships and continue to grow and invest in building a world-class team.
"Video has entered into a golden age, and we now live in the Digital Video Economy. As we enter this next phase, we are thrilled to partner with LLR. LLR’s team brings decades of unmatched support and expertise in growing industry-changing software companies and will undoubtedly help us accelerate our success as we pursue this massive market opportunity together," Dave Otten, JW Player Co-Founder and CEO.
JW Player is advised by Scratch Marketing + Media.
Park West led a $195m Series F round in GOAT Group, an online marketplace for sneakerheads, with participation from T. Rowe Price Associates, Franklin Templeton, Adage Capital Management and Ulysses Management.
"GOAT's growth is accelerating across every channel and category due to the powerful global technology platform we have developed and the premier customer experience we deliver, which resonates with younger consumers around the world," Eddy Lu, GOAT Group Co-Founder and CEO.
SK Global Chemical, a chemical company, agreed to acquire a 10% stake in Loop Industries, a waste disposal and management company, for $56m.
“We are delighted to form a strategic partnership with SK global chemical. SK global chemical is an ideal strategic partner to accelerate the growth of our company and the global commercialization of our technology. Its scale and sophistication, its global chemicals manufacturing footprint and a shared vision to create value through sustainability and innovation make them a valued partner in our journey to bring our technology to market," Daniel Solomita, Loop Industries Founder and CEO.
CIBC, a North American financial institution with 10m personal banking, business, public sector and institutional clients, completed the investment in Loop Capital, a Chicago headquartered financial services firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We have worked closely with the team at CIBC for many years, and this is a great opportunity to continue to pursue mutually beneficial growth opportunities for our respective platforms. Further, CIBC and Loop have cultural alignment and share a keen focus on serving clients that will allow us to continue to garner growth," Jim Reynolds, Loop Capital Chairman and CEO.
Audax-backed Mobileum, a global provider of analytics solutions for roaming and network services, security, risk management, and testing and monitoring, completed the acquisition of Convene Networks, a technology provider of integrated core network solutions for 3G/4G/5G network. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Convene Networks is an outstanding technology company with a set of innovative products that will help accelerate our 5G growth strategy. Mobileum's portfolio of network solutions has been helping service providers monetize their network and service environments, enabling them to offer next-generation B2B and B2C services with unparalleled efficiency. This acquisition strengthens our foundations and expands our solutions at the core of 5G and provides a "stronghold" to build and develop our 5G vision," Bobby Srinivasan, Mobileum CEO.
Vinco Ventures, a selective acquisitions company focused on digital media and content technologies, is set to spin-off Emmersive Entertainment, a developer and publisher of virtual reality entertainment technology and content software. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"This is a great opportunity for the shareholders of record on the effective date. The technology that Emmersive continues to develop is I believe industry-changing and we felt the best way to ensure the shareholders receive that value is by splitting the two entities and providing the shareholders the proverbial 'two bites of the apple.' We look forward to what Brian and the team can build and have full confidence in their ability to execute," Christopher Ferguson, Vinco CEO.
Oak Leaf Productions, an independent, minority-owned, full-service production, content and media company, agreed to acquire o1-agency, a creative agency. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"As Oak Leaf Productions continues its growth, I'm excited to bring o1 on board. Juan and Curro are some of the best creative minds in the industry. Their unique ideas and streamlined pace will serve us well as we create a modern-day studio that meets the rapidly changing cultural needs of media today," John Gallegos, Oak Leaf Productions Founder and CEO.
Ackman re-engages with SPAC target after a deal for UMG stake. (FS)
Bill Ackman said he has already re-engaged with a potential target for his remaining blank-check company after reaching a deal to buy a 10% stake in Universal Music Group before its spin-off from Vivendi this year, Bloombergreported.
The Vivendi transaction effectively will shrink the size of Ackman's Remainco blank-check company, allowing it to go after smaller targets that want to go public but require less cash than Pershing Square Tontine’s original targets.
ViacomCBS and Roku stock rises on speculation that Comcast may bid for the companies.
Shares of ViacomCBS, an American diversified multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate, and Roku, an American publicly traded digital media player company, gained on speculation that Comcast might make a bid for one of the companies, extending a string of media-industry deals.
Comcast CEO Brian Roberts reportedly considered a transaction with ViacomCBS or an acquisition of Roku. But the CEO has told people close to him that he doesn't need to seek a merger.
Bloombergreported that shares of ViacomCBS rose 2.7% to $41.84, their biggest one-day gain in almost a month. Roku climbed 4.5% to $421.70.
Thiel-backed Bullish is in SPAC merger talks. (FS)
Bullish, a cryptocurrency exchange backed by a group of billionaires, is in talks to merge with SPAC Far Peak Acquisition, Bloombergreported. The blank-check company is discussing a deal that could value Bullish at as much as $12bn. The final valuation could change depending on the price of Bitcoin.
An agreement could be reached as soon as the next few weeks. The SPAC has already received interest from investors about taking part in private investment in public equity transaction to help fund a deal. The size of the so-called PIPE could extend into the hundreds of millions of dollars.
Parexel draws interest from AmerisourceBergen. (FS)
Parexel International, a pharmaceutical services company, has drawn interest from potential suitors, including AmerisourceBergen, Bloombergreported.
A private equity consortium consisting of Cinven, Centerbridge Partners, and GTCR is working on an offer. Private equity firm EQT is also vying to buy the firm on its own. Other potential bidders could include Veritas Capital.
Carlyle-backed Syniverse is in M3-Brigade SPAC merger talks. (FS)
Syniverse Technologies, a messaging company that has been owned by The Carlyle Group since 2011, is in talks to go public through a merger with M3-Brigade Acquisition II, Bloombergreported.
M3-Brigade is seeking new equity to support a transaction that’s set to value Tampa, Florida-based Syniverse at about $3bn including debt. In March, Twilio agreed to invest as much as $750m in Syniverse ahead of a potential public listing. Syniverse has about $1.9bn in debt.
NFL explores strategic options for media properties.
The National Football League is exploring options for its media properties including selling stakes to strategic partners, a move aimed at expanding the reach of its television networks and digital services, WSJreported.
The league said it had hired Goldman Sachs Group to explore potential partnerships for the properties, which include the NFL Network and RedZone pay-TV channels as well as NFL.com.
The decision to seek partners is motivated by the league's belief that its TV and digital holdings will benefit from being aligned with bigger media and technology companies rather than remaining stand-alone operations, league and team officials said.
Bright Health raises $924m in United States IPO. (FS)
Tiger Global and Blackstone Group-backed Bright Health Group, a health insurance start-up, said it sold shares in its initial public offering at a price lower than its target range to raise $924m. Bright Health priced 51.3m shares at $18 per share and had issued a targeted price range of $20 to $23. The IPO values the company at $11.23bn, Reutersreported.
The IPO comes at a time more people seek remote healthcare during the pandemic, supercharging the telemedicine market and prompting companies to expand their scale.
JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Barclays were advisors on IPO.
Benchmark-backed Confluent raises $828m in US IPO. (FS)
Confluent, an infrastructure software startup, sold shares in its US IPO above its target range to raise $828m, Reutersreported. Confluent priced 23m shares at $36 per share. The company had previously priced its share between $29 and $33 apiece. The IPO values Confluent at $9bn.
The company counts venture capital firms Benchmark Capital Partners, Sequoia Capital, and Index Ventures among its prominent backers. Benchmark, which owns about 15.3% of Confluent's common stock, is the largest shareholder.
Doximity raises $606m in US IPO.
Doximity, a social network for doctors, sold 23.3m shares at $26 per share. The company had indicated it would sell shares between $20 and $23 for each and on Wednesday said it had raised nearly $606m in its IPO in the United States, giving it a valuation of about $4.6bn.
The company said that about $111m from the IPO proceeds would go to a selling stockholder.
Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan Securities were the lead underwriters for the IPO.
Smartfit considers raising $454m in IPO.
Smartfit, a Brazilian gym and dance school chain, said it might raise around $454m through the sale of shares in an IPO. That estimate is based on a price per share of $4.42, which is in the middle of an estimated price range of between $3.93 and $4.91 reais per share.
Banco Itau is the leading coordinator of the offering, which will initially involve the sale of 100m shares. More shares may be sold as part of the offering, depending on market conditions.
Vida Ventures closes $825m Vida III fund. (FS)
Vida Ventures, a next-generation life sciences venture firm, raised $825m for its new Vida Ventures III fund. Vida III will build upon the success of Vida's first two funds and continue its investment approach of identifying and investing in transformative biomedical innovations with the potential to meaningfully impact patients.
"As investors, company builders and life science supporters, each one of us at Vida is driven by the opportunity to unlock the power of science. From our formation to today with the close of Vida III, the goal is to do our part in converting dreams into groundbreaking therapies for patients. We are grateful to our existing investors who have continued to support us and to those new investors who are partnering with us on the next phase of our journey," Arie Belldegrun, Vida Co-Founder and Senior Managing Director.
Banner Ridge surpasses the $600m target for its new fund. (FS)
New York-based private equity firm Banner Ridge Partners exceeded the $600m target for its fourth secondary fund by collecting around $800m since it began fundraising earlier this year.
The New York-based firm expects to hold a final close for Banner Ridge Secondary Fund IV in the third quarter, WSJreported. The fund could reach up to $1bn in investor pledges.
Blackstone Group increased its offer for UK warehouse and home developer St. Modwen Properties to $7.8 per share, valuing the company at $1.77bn. The final offer, which has been recommended to shareholders by St. Modwen’s board, so far has the backing of about 11% of the company’s investors. The private-equity giant’s previous $7.5 a share offer was met with resistance from shareholder J O Hambro Capital Management.
The revised offer represents a 25% premium to St. Modwen’s share price on the day before the bid was announced in early May, and a 21% premium to the company’s net asset value.
ST. Modwen is advised by JP Morgan, Lazard, Numis Securities, Slaughter & May and FTI Consulting. Blackstone is advised by Rothschild & Co, Kirkland & Ellis and Paternoster. Rothschild & Co is advised by Ashurst.
Masmovil’s $2.38bn takeover of Spanish telecoms rival Euskaltel has won state approval, Reutersreported.
The friendly merger, which received the greenlight from Spain’s competition watchdog last week but still needs final regulatory approval, would reinforce Masmovil’s position as the fourth-largest operator in Spain’s crowded telecoms sector.
Euskaltel is advised Citigroup and JP Morgan. Masmovil is advised by Liberum Capital, Barclays, Clifford Chance, and Temple Bar Advisory. Zegona is advised by Perez Llorca, White & Case and Tavistock Communications.
Private equity firm Naxicap Partners agreed to invest in Groupe 3R, a major player in medical imaging in French-speaking Switzerland. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The medical project focusing on the patient and its undeniable progress in the artificial intelligence tools applied to imaging make 3R a true leader in French-speaking Switzerland and give it all the necessary advantages to become the consolidation platform of the radiology market, in Switzerland and in the neighbouring countries," Angèle Faugier, Naxicap Partner.
Groupe 3R is advised by Homburger. Naxicap is advised by PricewaterhouseCoopers, Streng, Indefi, Edelweiss Partners, KERIUS Finance, Python and Lamartine Conseil. Debt financing is provided by Capza.
Rathbone Brothers, a UK provider of personalized investment management and wealth management services, agreed to acquire Saunderson House, a UK-based advice-led wealth management business, from private equity firm Epiris for £150m ($209m).
"Saunderson House is a high-quality business with a strong desire to deliver leading wealth management services to clients over the long term, and it will add both scale and capability to Rathbones. Commonly shared values and a resolute focus on delivering quality client outcomes provide a firm foundation from which to take advantage of some exciting growth opportunities. I very much look forward to welcoming everyone at Saunderson House to the Rathbones group as we work to exceed our ambitions together," Paul Stockton, Rathbones CEO.
Saunderson House is advised by Fenchurch Advisory Partners and Macfarlanes. Rathbones is advised by Peel Hunt, RBC Capital Markets, Addleshaw Goddard and Camarco. Epiris is advised by PricewaterhouseCoopers and Greenbrook.
The Norwegian Competition Authority may block a bid by Norway’s largest bank DNB for domestic rival Sbanken, and will extend its review of the planned tie-up until August 26.
While more than 90% of Sbanken’s shareholders have accepted DNB’s offer of $1.36bn, completion of the deal hinges on approvals by the competition regulator, the bank regulator and the finance ministry. The NCA must decide by August 26 whether to allow the acquisition to go through or not. If it wants to block it, the two banks will in turn have a chance to respond before the regulator makes its final ruling by October 7, Reutersreported.
“The authority’s preliminary view is that the transaction may weaken competition in the market for mutual funds. This may lead to higher prices and harm consumers who invest in such funds,” NCA.
Sbanken is advised by Arctic Securities and Thommessen. DNB Bank is advised by DNB Bank and Advokatfirmaet BA-HR.
Silver Investment Partners, an independent equity finance investor for medium-sized companies in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, completed the investment in Crystal, a high-tech company in the field of crystal processing. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Crystal differentiates itself from competitors through years of experience and high-quality standards enabled by the use of advanced manufacturing technologies. With these capabilities, the company has a strong market position that prepares the ground for further long-term growth," Philipp Amereller, SIP Managing Partner.
SIP was advised by Roedl & Partners, King & Wood Mallesons and Finsbury Glover Hering.
Vienna-based real estate group S Immo said on Thursday its shareholders rejected a change to voting rights that was a condition to rival Immofinanz’s $1.4bn takeover bid, Reutersreported.
S Immo said shareholders, with a turnout of almost 55%, rejected the elimination of maximum voting rights at an annual general meeting Immofinanz had called the “last chance” for the merger to happen.
“This is probably the last chance to form a European real estate group from S Immo and Immofinanz. We see the rejection as a vote of confidence by our shareholders. We are not fundamentally against the takeover, but we are against the offer price,” Bruno Ettenauer, S Immo CEO.
The Carlyle Group-backed Accolade Wines, an international wine business, agreed to acquire Lambrini, a light and fruity perry or pear cider brand, from Halewood Artisanal Spirits, a global distiller and distributor of premium artisanal spirits. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The sale of Lambrini marks the final stage in our corporate strategy to focus on our core portfolio of artisanal spirits with award-winning brands including Whitley Neill Gin and JJ Whitley Vodka as part of a larger emphasis on the gin, vodka, rum and whisky categories from our 12 artisanal distilleries," Stewart Hainsworth, Halewood CEO.
Perwyn, an entrepreneurial, privately-funded investment firm, agreed to invest in IoT unit of JT Group, an innovative global telecommunications firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are extremely pleased to have secured the purchase of JT's IoT business. We have been watching JT's development in this space for some time with great interest and are impressed by both the speed and scale of their success and growth in this area. They are now one of the most attractive players in this global market. The process of dealing with JT and the island of Jersey during this transaction has been collaborative and productive. We are confident this relationship will bring benefits to Jersey, as well as augmenting the island's future attractiveness as an incubator for leading-edge innovative businesses. We look forward to working with the JT team to complete the transaction, which is one of important size and scale for us," Andrew Wynn, Perwyn Founder and Managing Partner.
Allied Irish Banks, a commercial bank in Ireland, and Great-West Lifeco, a Canadian insurance centered financial holding company, agreed to form a joint venture. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Today's announcement marks another key milestone in the delivery of AIB's strategy to enhance and diversify our revenue, to become a full provider of financial services for our customers and to build long-term, sustainable profits for our shareholders. This deal moves AIB beyond a distributor model to create a strong strategic alliance that marries the product and services expertise of Great-West Lifeco with AIB's market-leading customer franchise, technology and distribution. It will allow our customers to plan their finances and investments and puts us at the heart of our customers' financial lives," Colin Hunt, AIB CEO.
Great-West Lifeco is advised by Drury Porter Novelli.
Visa agreed to acquire Tink, a European open banking platform, for $2.1bn.
“Visa is committed to doing all we can to foster innovation and empower consumers in support of Europe’s open banking goals. By bringing together Visa’s network of networks and Tink’s open banking capabilities we will deliver increased value to European consumers and businesses with tools to make their financial lives more simple, reliable and secure," Al Kelly, Visa CEO and Chairman.
GlaxoSmithKline, a British multinational pharmaceutical company, is set to demerge its consumer healthcare unit into a publicly-traded company.
The new Consumer Healthcare company will have a portfolio which generated annual sales of more than £10bn ($14bn) in 2020 and is well-positioned for further growth. Driven by brands, innovation, leading-edge science and human understanding to deliver better everyday health, the company will have nine global power brands holding category leadership positions and major sales presences in the US and China. Altogether the business offers strong prospects for sustainable sales and profit growth, high cash generation and delivery of attractive returns for shareholders.
Gefco is up for sale.
Gefco, an auto transport firm, has been put up for sale by owners Russian Railways and Stellantis, a carmaker, in a deal expected to be worth more than €2bn ($2.39bn), Reutersreported.
The owners are working with JP Morgan, and Rothschild & Co on the divestiture adding potential buyers have already been asked to log their interest. Gefco is expected to post EBITDA of €345m ($409m) on sales of €4.4bn ($5.22bn) this year.
In 2020, factory and dealership closures and delayed purchases by consumers due to the pandemic led to a 20% slide in turnover to €3.8bn ($4.6bn), while recurring EBIT fell 32% to €140m ($166m).
BASF to acquire a 49.5% stake in Hollandse Kust Zuid from Vattenfall for $358m.
BASF, a German multinational chemical company, agreed to acquire a 49.5% stake in Hollandse Kust Zuid, an offshore wind park in the Netherlands, from Vattenfall, a power company owned by the Government of Sweden, for $358m.
Construction of the park will start in July, with the project expected to become fully operational in 2023, pending approval by the authorities and with its performance also hinging on the further development of renewable energy regulation, Reutersreported.
Unicredit completes its $213m buyback plan worth.
Unicredit, an international banking group headquartered in Milan, completed a buyback plan worth $213m ahead of time. The program started in May and was expected to be concluded by the end of September by Unicredit. 17.4m shares have been repurchased under the program, which ended on June 23 and now Unicredit has 0.78% of its capital.
Additional $764m buybacks shareholders approved in April, subject to the European Central Bank's decision to lift pandemic-induced regulatory restrictions on investors' remuneration after September 30.
Deripaska's ex-wife seeks to sell $200m Russian assets to Mubadala. (FS)
The ex-wife of sanctioned Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska sold a 2.6% stake in the power and aluminum company En+ Group International to sovereign fund Mubadala Investment.
Following the sale, Yumasheva's stake in EN+ will decline to 2.58%. Abu Dhabi's wealth fund is paying about $200m for a stake in the company founded by Yumasheva's former husband, Bloombergreported.
"EN+ has made significant progress in recent years, and is well positioned to generate sustainable value for stakeholders," Faris Sohail Al Mazrui, Mubadala’s Russia & CIS Investment Program Head.
PPF lifts stake in O2 Czech Republic to above 90%. (FS)
Reutersreported that investment group PPF is set to take full control of O2 Czech Republic and withdraw the Czech telecoms group from the Prague stock exchange, dealing a blow to a bourse that has seen the exit of other companies in recent years.
PPF said it had lifted its stake in the group to 90.01%, from 83.58%, in a reverse accelerated bookbuilding. It purchased the shares in the process for a total of $240m.
Aster Group plans merger with Central and Cecil.
Aster Group, a not-for-dividend housing association, and Central and Cecil, a London-based housing trust, announced they are in early talks to merge the two businesses.
The partnership would increase Aster's net assets from £888m ($1.2bn) to just under £1bn ($1.4bn). Both boards will receive a final business case in the autumn. A further announcement will then be made.
Europcar rejects takeover bid, saying the price too low.
Europcar, a French car hire group, has rejected a takeover bid, without specifying the bidder, saying the €0.44 ($0.52) per share price offered was too low, Reutersreported.
"The board of directors of the company has concluded that the price of €0.44 ($0.52) per share proposed does not reflect the company's full value and value creation potential," Europcar.
Siemens CEO prefers smaller deals to grow software business.
Siemens has the financial muscle to make significant deals to expand its software business but prefers smaller bolt-on acquisitions, Reutersreported.
The company has a strong track record with smaller deals, and "there was no reason why we should not continue doing that...particularly in the software space but also in the spaces which are adjacent, Roland Busch Siemens CEO stated.
Carrefour seeks consolidation, alliances, or divestitures of foreign units.
Carrefour, a French retailer, started considering possible consolidation, divestitures, or tie-ups of its foreign subsidiaries but had not decided to sell any assets, Reutersreported. Carrefour was planning to sell its subsidiaries in Poland and in Taiwan and had mandated KPMG to audit them.
"As part of its future strategic plan, Carrefour has initiated a reflection on the critical mass of its international subsidiaries and possible future consolidation, alliances, or divestiture moves," Carrefour spokeswoman.
Old Mutual investors to share $734m of Nedbank stock.
Old Mutual, a South African insurer, would distribute $734m in shares in lender Nedbank among its shareholders, reducing its stake in the bank to 7.2% from 19.4%.
The insurer once held a more than 50% stake in the lender, one of South Africa's big four banks, but sold off most of that in 2018 in a drive to simplify its conglomerate structure. This simplifies the Old Mutual group and provides a substantial return of capital to shareholders, Reutersreported.
The 62.13m Nedbank shares, worth around $734m based on Nedbank's closing share price, represent around 12.2% of Nedbank's issued share capital.
Trans-o-Flex plans 2021 IPO.
Trans-o-Flex is preparing to list on the Frankfurt stock exchange as early as September in a deal that could value the German logistics firm at roughly €1bn ($1.2bn), Reutersreported.
The company is working with JP Morgan on the IPO that could see stock worth €300m ($356m) sold. Trans-o-Flex, shorthand for Transportorganisation von besonderer Flexibilität or transport group with special flexibility, was founded in 1971 by five logistics entrepreneurs.
Mubadala-backed Catalyst Partners seek to raise more funds. (FS)
Mubadala-backed fund Abu Dhabi Catalyst Partners is ready to raise more capital after investing close to $1bn over the last 18 months, Reuters reported. The fund was set up by Abu Dhabi state fund Mubadala and Falcon Edge Capital, a US alternative asset manager, in 2019 with $1bn in the capital.
CEO James Munce said Catalyst Partners had so far made 21 investments with an average ticket size of $50m, with some deals investing up to $100m.
"The plan is to go again. I think we have gone faster than expected. My view on it is this can grow to be another $1bn, and we have $2bn deployed over the next 18 months from here. That will be a four-year track record of a $2bn fund, and we would start to get some relevance in the region," James Munce, Catalyst Partners CEO.
Emart, a South Korean retailer, agreed to acquire an 80.01% stake in Korean business of eBay, a multinational e-commercer company, for $3bn.
"After a thorough strategic review and competitive sale process, we are excited to come to an agreement with Emart. This deal brings together two strong ecommerce and retail companies that can unlock tremendous potential in Korea and provide more choice for customers. We believe this move further optimizes our portfolio and creates value for eBay shareholders," Jamie Iannone, eBay CEO.
IDG Capital and Sequoia Capital led a $200m Series B round in SmartMore, a vision AI technology company, with participation from CoStone Capital, Green Pine Capital Partners, Lenovo Capital and ZhenFund.
This round of funding will be mainly used to further cultivate the market, increase investment in R&D of products and technology, and drive large-scale implementation into more intelligent manufacturing scenarios.
Mubadala sells a 4.5% stake in Oil Search. (FS)
Abu Dhabi state investor Mubadala sold a 4.5% stake in Oil Search, the largest oil and gas exploration and development company incorporated in Papua New Guinea, for $275m.
Khaldoon al-Mubarak, Mubadala's chief executive, said that the $232bn fund's strategy shift would mean more sell downs in "legacy commodity sectors" either through market listings or private placements.
Ant Group in talks to establish a credit-scoring company.
Ant Group, which owns China's largest digital payment platform Alipay, is in talks with Chinese state-owned enterprises to create a credit-scoring company that will put the fintech giant's proprietary consumer data under regulators' purview, according to a WSJreport.
The new entity, which could be established as soon as the third quarter of this year, could result in Ant ceding some control over the voluminous data it has on the financial habits of Chinese citizens. More than one billion individuals use Ant's Alipay app to spend, borrow or invest their money, and the information that Ant has collected and used has been the secret sauce behind the company's success in recent years.
Westpac cancels plans of potential demerger of NZ business.
Westpac Banking, Australia's second-largest lender, will retain its New Zealand business, wrapping up the option of a spin-off after a review likely found that a demerger would have been too costly,Reutersreported.
Without providing further details, Westpac said in a statement that a review to consider a spin-off, triggered by New Zealand's tighter capital norms, had found that a demerger would not be in the best interests of shareholders.
A decision to demerge the business could have encouraged some of its Australia-based peers who, alongside Westpac, dominate 85% of the New Zealand market - Australia and New Zealand Banking Group, Commonwealth Bank, and National Australia Bank - to follow its lead.
Sembcorp Marine enters talks to combine with Keppel's marine services business. (FS)
Sembcorp Marine, a global marine and offshore engineering group, agreed to prospect a potential combination with Singaporean conglomerate Keppel's offshore and marine businesses.
Talks to explore combining their offshore and marine businesses, Reutersreported, were set to begin earlier by the Temasek-backed companies. Sembcorp also announced a $1.12bn fully committed rights issue.
Endeavour Group makes the Australian stock market debut after Woolworths split.
Endeavour Group, an Australian liquor and hotel company, made its debut on Thursday, fetching a valuation of close to A$11bn ($8.33bn) two years after grocer Woolworths Group set into motion plans for a demerger.
Endeavour's shares opened at A$6.5 ($4.86) and was trading around A$6 ($4.48) half an hour later, valuing the company that operates more than 1.6k liquor stores and 330 hotels nationally at around A$10.85bn ($8.11bn).
Woolworths, the country's largest supermarket chain, in 2019 announced plans to merge ALH Group, its hotel arm, with its drinks business to form Endeavour Group with plans to eventually spin-off the company in 2020.
Kioxia, formerly Toshiba Memory, seeks September IPO. (FS)
Japan's Kioxia Holdings, the world's second-largest maker of flash memory chips and formerly known as Toshiba Memory, plans an IPO as early as September, Reutersreported.
Kioxia, which is controlled by private equity firm Bain Capital, last year shelved a plan to offer up to JPY334.3bn ($3bn) in shares, which would have been Japan's largest IPO of 2020.
That postponement came amid trade frictions between China and the United States that the Japanese chipmaker worried would cut it off from key customers. The Tokyo stock exchange is expected to give its approval in July.
Xpeng gets approval for its $2bn Hong Kong listing.
Electric vehicle maker Xpeng received the green light from the Hong Kong stock exchange to list in the city, the latest homecoming share sale by a Chinese company, Bloombergreported.
The company submitted an updated listing document on Wednesday, indicating it has won the bourse's approval. The EV maker could raise as much as $2bn in Hong Kong as soon as this year. Xpeng American depositary receipts climbed 5.3% in premarket trading on Wednesday.
Nayuki raises $656m in Hong Kong IPO.
Nayuki Holdings, a Chinese bubble tea chain, has raised HK$5.09bn ($656m) after pricing its Hong Kong IPO at the top of a marketed range, the latest company to ride a resurgence of listings in the Asian financial hub.
Nayuki, whose popular fresh-fruit teas include cheese-foam-topped beverages, has priced 257.3m shares at HK$19.8 ($2.55) each. It had marketed the shares at HK$17.2 ($2.21) to HK$19.8 ($2.55) apiece.
Soulgate abandons plans for US IPO. (FS)
Temasek-backed Soulgate, the Chinese social networking app, halted plans for its initial public offering in the United States. The company reportedly received other offers to raise capital. It had filed to raise $185m by offering 13.2m ADSs at a price range of $13 to $15.
"Due to alternative financing options made available to Soulgate, the company decided to halt the IPO," Soulgate spokesperson.
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