Elon Musk and Twitter were sued by a Florida pension fund seeking to stop Musk from completing his $44bn takeover of the social media company before 2025.
In a proposed class action filed in Delaware Chancery Court, the Orlando Police Pension Fund said Delaware law forbade a quick merger because Musk had agreements with other big Twitter shareholders, including his financial adviser Morgan Stanley that owns about 8.8% of Twitter and Twitter founder Jack Dorsey who owns 2.4%, to support the buyout, Reuters reported.
The fund said those agreements made Musk, who owns 9.6% of Twitter, the effective "owner" of more than 15% of the company's shares. It said that required delaying the merger by three years unless two-thirds of shares not "owned" by him granted approval.
Additioanlly, Elon Musk has secured about $7.1bn of new financing commitments, including billionaire Larry Ellison, Oracle Co-Founder and Tesla board member, and Sequoia Capital to help fund his proposed $44bn acquisition of Twitter.
Larry Ellison has committed $1bn, becoming Musk's biggest private equity partner for the deal. Other contributions include $800m from venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, $700m from VyCapital, $500m from cryptocurrency exchange Binance, $400m from Andreessen Horowitz, $375m from Qatar, approximately $316m from Fidelity, and $250m from Brookfield Asset Management.
Elon Musk is advised by Bank of America, Barclays, Morgan Stanley, McDermott Will & Emery and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom. Debt financing is provided by BNP Paribas, Bank of America, Barclays, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Mizuho Securities, Morgan Stanley and Societe Generale. Debt providers are advised by Davis Polk & Wardwell. Twitter is advised by Allen & Company, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati and Joele Frank. Financial advisors are advised by Sullivan & Cromwell.
Canada's Commissioner of Competition intends to oppose Rogers Communications' proposed $21bn merger with Shaw Communications, a Canadian telecommunications company, Reuters reported.
The companies have proposed full divesture of Shaw's wireless business, Freedom Mobile, to address concerns regarding the possible impact of the merger deal on Canada's competitive wireless market.
Rogers announced last year that it was buying Shaw in a deal that would create Canada's second-largest cellular and cable operator. However, investors and analysts believed that regulatory risks were imminent.
Rogers is advised by Bank of America, Barclays, Cravath Swaine & Moore, Goodmans and Torys. Financial advisors are advised by Davis Polk & Wardwell, Latham & Watkins and McCarthy Tetrault. Shaw is advised by CIBC World Markets, TD Securities, Burnet Duckworth & Palmer, Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg, Dentons and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz. Financial advisors are advised by Osler Hoskin & Harcourt.
Brookfield, an asset management firm, agreed to acquire Watermark Lodging Trust, a real estate investment trust for $3.8bn.
"We are very pleased to reach this agreement with Brookfield, as it achieves our longer-term objective of a liquidity event, while providing our stockholders with an immediate and certain cash value. The transaction's premium to our most recently published Net Asset Values per share represents the strong execution of our entire team who have demonstrated the ability to find innovative solutions to address the challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. I would like to thank the members of our Watermark team, across all functions, for their dedication and hard work over the past several years," Michael Medzigian, Watermark Chairman and CEO.
Watermark is advised by Hodges Ward Elliott, Morgan Stanley, Clifford Chance and Paul Hastings. Brookfield is advised by Bank of America, Citigroup, JP Morgan, Wells Fargo Securities and Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson. Debt financing is provided by Bank of America, Citigroup, JP Morgan and Wells Fargo Securities.
NuScale Power, a designer and marketer of small modular reactors, went public via a SPAC merger with Spring Valley Acquisition, a special purposes acquisition company, in a $1.9bn deal. PIPE investors include Samsung C&T, DS Private Equity, Segra Capital Management, Pearl Energy, Doosan Heavy Industries and Construction, JGC Holdings, IHI, Enercon Services, GS Energy, Sarens and Sargent & Lundy.
"The scale of our ambition is only matched by the world's enormous decarbonization needs, and now is the right time to accelerate and expand our efforts to bring our trailblazing SMR technology to more customers around the world. Spring Valley will be a highly complementary strategic partner for NuScale as we enter this next phase of growth, with leadership that brings deep expertise in sustainable energy and a strong operating and investment record in the energy sector, including in nuclear power," John Hopkins, NuScale President and CEO.
NuScale Power was advised by Guggenheim Partners, Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, Stoel Rives, Blueshirt Group and Finsbury Glover Hering. Spring Valley Acquisition was advised by Cowen & Company, Guggenheim Partners, Kirkland & Ellis and White & Case.
DraftKings, a digital sports entertainment and gaming company, completed the acquisition of Golden Nugget Online Gaming, an online gaming company, from Fertitta, a hospitality and gaming company, for $1.56bn.
"Our acquisition of Golden Nugget Online Gaming, a brand synonymous with iGaming and entertainment, will enhance our ability to instantly reach a broader consumer base, including Golden Nugget's loyal 'iGaming-first' customers. This deal creates meaningful synergies such as increased combined company revenues driven by additional cross-sell opportunities, loyalty integrations and tech-driven product expansion as well as technology optimization and greater marketing efficiencies. We look forward to Tilman being an active member of our Board and one of our largest shareholders," Jason Robins, DraftKings CEO and Chairman of the Board.
Golden Nugget Online Gaming was advised by Jefferies & Company, Spectrum Gaming Capital, White & Case, Dancie Perugini Ware and Solebury Trout. Financial advisors were advised by Vinson & Elkins. DraftKings was advised by The Raine Group and Sullivan & Cromwell. Fertitta was advised by Latham & Watkins.
Shareholders of Zanite Acquisition, a SPAC, approved the company’s $2.4bn merger with planemaker Embraer’s electric aircraft subsidiary Eve.
"Such approval is an important step towards the closing of the Business Combination. Subject to the satisfaction or waiver of certain customary closing conditions that can only be satisfied or waived on the closing date, the Company expects that the closing of the Business Combination will occur on May 9, 2022," Antonio Carlos Garcia, Embraer Executive Vice-President and CFO.
EVE is advised by Banco Bradesco, Banco Itau, Raymond James and Santander. Zanite is advised by BTIG, Jefferies & Company and White & Case. Embraer is advised by Mattos Filho Veiga Filho Marrey Jr. e Quiroga Advogados and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom.
The Chernin Group, a multi-stage investment firm, and eBay agreed to acquire a 25% stake in Funko, a pop culture consumer products company, from ACON Investments, an international private equity investment firm, for $263m.
"We believe Funko is significantly undervalued in the public markets and at this highly attractive entry price provides a runway of opportunity and growth potential. There are many areas of identifiable growth across content, commerce, marketplaces, consumer products and technology that should drive substantial increases to Funko's performance," Peter Chernin, TCG Co-Founder and Partner.
TCG is advised by LionTree Advisors, Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, Gladstone Place Partners and Principal Communications Group. Funko is advised by Goldman Sachs and Latham & Watkins. ACON Investments is advised by Winston & Strawn.
PDC Energy, a domestic exploration and production company that acquires, explores and develops properties for the production of crude oil, natural gas and NGLs, completed the acquisition of Great Western Petroleum, a company that explores, develops, and deposits crude oil and natural gas, from TPG for $1.3bn.
"Coupled with our existing high-quality inventory, this Core Wattenberg acquisition adds meaningful scale to PDC while also demonstrating our commitment to – and confidence in – the future of safe and responsible energy development in the state of Colorado. This opportunity meets all the Company's acquisition-related criteria we've previously communicated by strengthening our free cash flow, increasing our shareholder returns, honoring the balance sheet and adding competitive, high-quality inventory," Bart Brookman, PDC Energy President and CEO.
PDC Energy was advised by PJT Partners and Davis Graham & Stubbs. Great Western Petroleum was advised by Citigroup and Latham & Watkins. TPG was advised by Vinson & Elkins.
Vance Street Capital, a private equity firm, completed the acquisition of Carmanah Technologies, a solar LED pedestrian and traffic safety technology. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"This is an exciting day for Carmanah as we enter a new chapter. Vance Street's commitment to developing a traffic and pedestrian safety ITS platform aligns with our confidence in the growth of the pedestrian and driver safety market. It kickstarts a new and exciting phase for us that will propel greater opportunities and development of our critical safety products," Geoff Wilcox, Carmanah President & CEO.
Vance Street was advised by Harris Williams & Co and Paul Hastings. Debt financing was provided by Barings. Carmanah Technologies was advised by Fort Capital Partners and Borden Ladner Gervais.
SIRVA, a provider of moving and relocation services, agreed to merge with BGRS, a global relocation and moving providers. The combined company will be named SIRVA BGRS. Madison Dearborn Partners and Relo Group will maintain interests in the new organization. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"This is a natural combination that allows us to meet the expanding and evolving mobility needs of our clients around the world. We look forward to combining our complementary industry expertise, footprint, and technological resources to create a single entity with greater efficiency, scale and local experience, well-positioned to shape the future of mobility and deliver greater value to customers," Tom Oberdorf, SIRVA Chairman and CEO.
SIRVA is advised by Robert W Baird, Davis Polk & Wardwell and Mori Hamada & Matsumoto. BGRS is advised by Kirkland & Ellis and Sard Verbinnen & Co.
Liberty Strategic Capital, a US-based private equity firm, completed the acquisition of a majority stake in Zimperium, a mobile security company, from Warburg Pincus, Sierra Ventures, SoftBank, Telstra Ventures and Samsung for $525m. SoftBank remains the minority shareholder.
"Mobile devices and applications are an integral part of daily life for people around the world. They contain or serve as a gateway to the most sensitive personal and organizational data, making them an extremely valuable target for attackers. It's clear that mobile is the new front line for cybersecurity. We all need to increase our focus on the protection of mobile devices and applications. Liberty Strategic Capital is investing in Zimperium because they've shown that they can lead the way in this multibillion-dollar market," Steven T. Mnuchin, Liberty Strategic Capital Founder and Managing Partner.
Zimperium was advised by JP Morgan, Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe and fama PR. Liberty Strategic was advised by Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison.
CarVal Investors, a global alternative investment manager, completed the acquisition of a minority stake in Verogy, a provider of solar energy project development services. Stonehenge Growth Capital retains a significant equity stake in the firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We have evaluated several solar development platforms over the years. The two driving factors that made this investment in Verogy attractive to CarVal were the management team's significant experience developing projects, and their 'ownership mentality,' as indicated by their desire to maintain a meaningful ownership percentage in the business. We are excited to continue to expand on Verogy's already impressive growth trajectory," Jerry Keefe, CarVal Principal.
CarVal Investors was advised by Marathon Capital and Morgan Lewis & Bockius. Verogy was advised by Javelin Capital and Baker Botts.
Republic Services, a firm engaged in the environmental services industry, and Archaea Energy, a RNG producer, agreed to form a $1.1bn joint venture to develop 39 RNG projects across the US.
"Sustainability is a platform for growth at Republic, and our continued investment in landfill gas-to-energy projects delivers meaningful environmental and economic benefits to our stakeholders. Market demand for renewable natural gas to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is growing significantly, and providing additional sources of RNG furthers Republic's ambitious sustainability goals, while also helping customers and communities meet their own climate action goals," Jon Vander Ark, Republic Services President and CEO.
Republic Services is advised by Moelis & Co, Davis Polk & Wardwell and Katz Barron.
Porsche, a German automobile manufacturer, led a $400m Series C funding round Group14 Technologies, a manufacturer of advanced silicon-carbon technology, with participation from OMERS, Decarbonization Partners, Riverstone Holdings, Vsquared Ventures and Moore Strategic Ventures.
"Despite all global challenges, we are driving forward on our future projects consistently including digitalization and electrification. Our investment in Group14 is an important step for Porsche's M&A activities. We have been actively investing in ambitious companies since 2016 and through our venture capital unit Porsche Ventures, we have gained a deep understanding of the venture capital world and are excited to lead this round," Lutz Meschke, Porsche Deputy Chairman and Member of the Executive Board of Finance and IT.
Group14 was advised by Citigroup, Nomura and Mission Control Communications.
General Atlantic, a global growth equity firm, Nautic Partners, a middle-market private equity firm, and The Vistria Group, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire PANTHERx Rare, a specialty pharmacy company, from Centene, a health care programs provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"PANTHERx transforms lives by providing access solutions to people living with rare medical conditions. Our investment was a collaborative effort to bring focus to an area that not only has been significantly underserved but also offers a wealth of opportunity to enhance the lives of patients," Jon Maschmeyer, The Vistria Group Senior Partner and Co-Head of Healthcare.
Centene is advised by Barclays and Bass Berry & Sims. The Vistria Group is advised by Ropes & Gray.
Aurora Cannabis, a licensed cannabis producer, completed the acquisition of TerraFarma, a licensed ACMPR producer, for $68m.
"With the transaction closing, we officially welcome Geoff Hoover and his team to Aurora. We look forward to the expertise they will bring to our Canadian recreational business and Aurora's leadership in the global cannabis space," Miguel Martin, Aurora CEO.
Brookfield led a $175m Series D funding round in Material Bank, an operator of a material marketplace platform, with participation from Fifth Wall, SoftBank Vision Fund 2, RXR, 9Yards Capital, Echo Street, Bain Capital Ventures, Durable Capital Partners, General Catalyst, BOND, Raine Ventures, and Lead Edge Capital.
"We have been fortunate to raise capital over the last few years from some of the best financial firms in the world, and with this raise, we turned our focus to strategic investors—and there is no better partner for our business than Brookfield given their massive holdings in real estate and related industries as well as their incredible track record of helping their portfolio companies grow," Adam I. Sandow, Material Bank Founder and CEO.
Material Bank was advised by Novita Communications.
B&G Foods, a branded foods holding company, completed the acquisition of the frozen vegetable manufacturing operations of Growers Express, a farmer-owned grower, packer and shipper of fresh vegetables. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"By increasing the variety and volume of Green Giant frozen vegetable products produced at internal manufacturing facilities, we expect to reduce inefficiencies, reduce costs and reduce supply chain risk for certain Green Giant frozen products. We also believe that this acquisition will enhance our innovation efforts for the Green Giant brand and improve our speed to market for new innovation. Growers Express has been an important partner of B&G Foods for a number of years and we thank them for their partnership," Casey Keller, B&G Foods President and CEO.
Glencore, a British–Swiss multinational commodity trading and mining company, agreed to invest a $200m investment in Li-Cycle, a provider of lithium-ion battery resource recovery services and lithium-ion battery recycler.
"We are thrilled to have Glencore as a long-term strategic investor and global commercial partner. Bringing our complementary capabilities together will accelerate the path to a circular economy for critical materials in the lithium-ion battery supply chain. These agreements further secure and diversify our lithium-ion battery supply and feedstock sources, competitively positioning our network expansion in North America and Europe," Ajay Kochhar, Li-Cycle Co-Founder and CEO.
Nuveen Real Estate, a real estate funds and mandates manager, Taconic Partners, an operator and developer of commercial and residential real estate, and North American Properties, a real estate operating company, completed the acquisition of Ridge Hill, a mixed-use lifestyle center, for $220m.
"We see this as an attractively priced asset in an evolving sector that fits within our well-diversified New York property focused real estate fund. The acquisition of Ridge Hill reflects a generational opportunity to re-position an already dominant lifestyle center that sits in the heart of one of the country's most affluent and densely populated regions," Nadir Settles, Nuveen Managing Director and Head of the New York Property Fund.
Activate Capital, a venture capital firm, led a $100m Series E funding round in Fictive, an operator of a digital manufacturing ecosystem, with participation from Angeleno Group, Cross Creek, The Westly Group, Accel, Bill Gates, G2 Venture Partners, and Standard Investments.
"We're grateful for this outstanding support from our investment partners. We plan to leverage this new capital to accelerate our investment in our customers' top challenges, particularly time to market for new products and supply chain risk and geographic resilience, through increased collaboration across organizations with reliable, transparent sourcing workflows," Dave Evans, Fictiv CEO.
eWorld, an online marketing and advertising company, completed the acquisition of a 10% stake in NFT Distribution, a corporation focused on the curation of NFT artists and emerging companies into the NFT space. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"This agreement with NFT Distribution is a major milestone for both companies that will deliver significant value to eWorld Shareholders. NFT Distribution, Inc. is a rapidly growing company with a strong presence and connection in the NFT and Web3 space. NFT Distribution currently has four highly anticipated projects in queue for release in 2022 and more expected to be added before year's end. This agreement strategically positions eWorld to immediately benefit from the explosive growth already underway with NFTs and Web3," Pablo Gallardo Wagner, eWorld Companies CEO.
TA Associates, a private equity firm, agreed to invest in Vista Equity Partners-backed iCIMS, a provider of cloud-based talent acquisition solutions. Susquehanna Growth Equity will continue to be a shareholder. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Over the last three years, we’ve scaled iCIMS from a North American talent acquisition solution provider to the global leader in talent technology that empowers the enterprise to transform the hiring process. We have partnered with TA on several occasions, and we are eager to leverage our combined value-add capabilities to enhance iCIMS’ unique market position and realize additional growth," Monti Saroya, Vista Co-Head of Flagship Fund and Senior Managing Director.
Riverbend puts oil & gas portfolios for sale.
Riverbend Energy Group, an energy investment firm, is exploring a sale of three portfolios of oil and gas assets, seizing on a rally in commodity prices to seek in total around $2bn, including debt, from potential buyers, Reuters reported.
Riverbend has been working with an investment bank on an auction process for the triumvirate of land parcel assets in recent weeks. The assets across all three portfolios consist of minority stakes in individual oil and gas wells.
The three portfolios - Riverbend VI, Riverbend VI-B and Riverbend VIII - could attract interest from other financial investors who do not have drilling experience and want the cash generated by oil and gas assets.
Radius Global Infrastructure considers options, including sale.
Radius Global Infrastructure, a firm that leases cell sites to wireless-tower companies and mobile network operators, is exploring strategic options, including a sale.
Bill Berkman, Radius Global CEO, works with an adviser to solicit interest from potential suitors, including infrastructure investment firms.
Infrastructure-focused firms have been investing heavily in digital assets, which are viewed as stable with recurring revenue, Bloomberg reported.
Peloton seeks minority investment.
Peloton Interactive, an interactive fitness platform, is exploring a sale of a sizable minority stake to shore up its business as the once-hot bike maker's stock continues to sink, WSJ reported.
The fitness company targets potential investors, including industry players and private-equity firms that could take a stake of around 15% to 20%. New capital could bolster Peloton as it attempts a significant turnaround. It could also serve as a vote of confidence if it comes from an established private-equity firm or technology giant such as Amazon.com, which is among the suitors that have explored a full purchase of Peloton.
Bausch + Lomb prices IPO below expectations.
Bausch + Lomb, a global eye health company, priced its IPO at $18 a share, falling short of expectations as it became the first big company in months to try going public into a turbulent stock market, WSJ reported.
Bausch Health, the parent company, raised $630m in the offering. It aimed to raise as much as $840m and sell the stock at $21 to $24 a share.
The debut of the eye-care company, a spinoff of Bausch Health, is being watched closely as a bellwether for the IPO market, which has been virtually shut down since stocks started falling earlier this year. It is the first big IPO since private-equity firm TPG went public in mid-January.
TPG targets $3.5bn for the healthcare fund. (FS)
TPG is seeking $3.5bn for its second fund focused exclusively on healthcare deals. Commitments for the new vehicle, TPG Healthcare Partners II, are being raised as part of the firm's broader campaign to collect a combined total of $18.5bn for the healthcare fund and the firm's latest main fund, TPG Partners IX, WSJ reported.
Recently, TPG has closed its TPG Rise Climate at $7.3bn. The climate investing fund closed at its hard cap.
HOF Capital brings in $300m for the second early-stage fund. (FS)
HOF Capital, a global multistage VC firm, brings in $300m for the second early-stage fund and plans to double down on its strategy of focusing on pre-seed through Series A.
"We're a young entrepreneurial team where almost every investment team member has a STEM background, so we speak the same language as the founders we partner with. We truly roll up our sleeves and help with recruiting, strategy and anything else a founder needs while taking a back-seat from a management perspective and trusting them with leading their companies," Hisham Elhaddad, HOF Capital Co-Founder.
A consortium led by Cassa Depositi e Prestiti, an investment company, completed the acquisition of an 88% stake in Autostrade per l'Italia, a motorway unit of Atlantia, a company engaged in engages in toll road and airport management and operates in Italian motorways, for $8.66bn. Other bidders include Macquarie and Blackstone.
CDP Equity owns 51%, Blackstone Infrastructure Partners and funds managed by Macquarie Asset Management holds 24.5% each in Autostrade per l'Italia.
Atlantia was advised by Bank of America, Equitas Partners, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Mediobanca, Chiomenti, Gianni Origoni Grippo Cappelli & Partners, Legance, Maisto e Associati, Sullivan & Cromwell and White & Case. Edizione was advised by Equita SIM. Blackstone was advised by Clifford Chance, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Tancredi. Macquarie was advised by Rothschild & Co and Barabino & Partners. ACS was advised by Societe Generale. CDP was advised by Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Lazard, Rothschild & Co, UniCredit, Cappelli RCCD and Foglia & Partners. Autostrade per l’Italia was advised by KPMG and BonelliErede.
Space Capital Club, an early-stage space venture capital fund, agreed to acquire a 40% stake in Bruno Generators Group, a firm active in the design, production, distribution and rental of power generation systems and lighting towers. Financial terms were not disclosed.
The objective of Space Capital Club's investment is to support the international development of the croup with particular focus on the North American and Australian markets and to prepare its future listing on the stock exchange within 3-5 years.
Space Capital Club is advised by Ernst & Young, Roland Berger, Fineurop Soditic, BonelliErede, Gatti Pavesi Bianchi, Giovannelli e Associati and Maisto e Associati. Dent financing is provided by Deutsche Bank. Bruno Generators is advised by Mediobanca.
Todd Boehly, Clearlake Capital, a private equity firm, Mark Walter and Hansjoerg Wyss agreed to acquire Chelsea Football Club from Roman Abramovich for £4.25bn ($5.25bn). The sale is expected to complete in late May subject to all necessary regulatory approvals.
Of the total investment, £2.5bn will be used to buy the shares in Chelsea and that money will be distributed to charity. The remaining £1.75bn is earmarked for investment in the club, including its stadium and women's team.
Roman Abramovich is advised by The Raine Group.
OMV and Koch to join bidding for DSM’s $3.2bn thermoplastics unit.
OMV, an integrated oil and gas company, has joined the battle for control of the thermoplastics division of Royal DSM, a Dutch multinational corporation. The DSM unit could be valued at more than $3.2bn, Bloomberg reported.
OMV is participating in the second phase of the competitive auction process for DSM’s engineering materials business. The potential transaction would allow OMV to expand its chemical portfolio beyond polyolefins.
Koch Industries, a US-based industrial conglomerate, is also expected to make an offer in the next round of bidding. Lanxess, a German chemicals group, has teamed up with private equity house Advent International to bid for the business, and buyout firm SK Capital has also made an offer.
DSM is advised by JP Morgan and Centerview Partners.
GEPF to invest $1.6bn in unlisted companies.
The Government Employees Pension Fund, a South Africa-based defined benefit pension fund, is looking to invest $1.6bn in private firms. A joint statement from GEPF and the Public Investment, an asset management firm, reveals that the PIC will make all investment decisions.
The initial planned allocation was $4.4bn. However, after a judicial inquiry was launched against the PIC, the size of the allocation was reduced.
RedBird Capital interested in AC Milan deal. (FS)
RedBird Capital Partners, an investment group, is in talks with the owners of Italian soccer club AC Milan about a possible deal, emerging as a rival to Bahrain-domiciled fund Investcorp, Reuters reported.
RedBird is an investor in Fenway Sports Group, the owner of Liverpool FC and the Boston Red Sox baseball team. RedBird also has a controlling stake in French soccer club Toulouse.
Investcorp had been in exclusive negotiations with Elliott but has so far failed to clinch a deal. The talks between Investcorp and Elliott, based on a valuation of about $1.26bn, including debt, for Milan are still ongoing.
ED&F Man in talks to sell brokerage business.
ED&F Man, a global financial brokerage firm, is in talks to sell its brokerage business, as the commodities trader best known for hauling sugar and coffee seeks to turn its business around, Bloomberg reported.
The London-based trader already has an offer for its ED&F Man Capital Markets unit from rival brokerage Marex Group. The company has also held talks with Prudential Financial and no final decision has been made.
Shell will sell fuel stations in Russia.
Shell is in talks to sell its fuel stations in Russia as it withdraws from the country in response to the invasion of Ukraine. Lukoil, a Russian oil producer, which has its own retail network, is the most likely buyer. Shell’s retail network includes more than 370 branded sites in 28 cities in Russia, Bloomberg reported.
“We can confirm the ongoing negotiations on the sale of Shell Neft, which owns a retail network and lubricants plant which is located in Torzhok. Our key priority is safety of our people and operations, maintaining employment and compliance with the Russian legislation," Shell.
Sovcomflot plans to sell part of its fleet.
Sovcomflot, a Russian shipping company, plans to sell part of its fleet as it grapples with Western sanctions and seeks to repay outstanding loans.
Sovcomflot has faced growing challenges in concluding charters as ports, end purchasers, marine insurers, and other freight companies pull back from Russian business amid sanctions imposed in response to Moscow's invasion of Ukraine, Reuters reported.
Vescovini to seek a $2bn valuation in IPO.
Vescovini, a maker of industrial fasteners, is planning an IPO in Milan that could value the company at as much as $2bn.
The Italian company may list in the fourth quarter. Bank of America and Citigroup are among the banks leading the offering. Deliberations are ongoing and no final decisions on the size, timing, or location of an IPO have been taken, Bloomberg reported.
Vescovini manufactures more than 1.3bn industrial fasteners, such as nuts, bolts, and axles. The company supplies its products to the automotive, construction, and agricultural machinery sectors, among others, and generates annual revenue of $248m.
EuroAPI announces listing on Euronext Paris.
EuroAPI, Sanofi’s pharmaceutical-ingredients spinoff, announces the listing on the regulated market of Euronext Paris and its first day of trading under the ticker: EAPI. The listing aims to accelerate EUROAPI’s clear strategic roadmap to capture opportunities of the API market.
“The listing of EUROAPI marks an exciting milestone for the development of our company as it will enable us to consolidate our leadership in the dynamic API market. By operating as an independent company, EUROAPI will gain flexibility and growth opportunities to reinforce its status as partner of choice for all pharmaceutical and biotech companies. We are fully confident in our ability to unlock further value for all our stakeholders and look forward to writing this new chapter alongside Sanofi, which will remain a long-term strategic partner, BPI France and L’Oréal, and to serve our clients in Europe and globally," Karl Rotthier, EUROAPI CEO.
EUROAPI was advised by Jones Day.
Mirabaud Asset Management closes a €150m strategy.
Mirabaud Asset Management, an asset management arm of Mirabaud, has closed its Mirabaud Grand Paris strategy at €150m. Assets were raised from large institutional and family office clients across Europe.
Mirabaud Grand Paris is a unique private equity strategy investing with tier one real estate developers in France to capture opportunities from the current most significant transport and urban development project in Europe.
A consortium consisting of DCP Capital Partners, Ocean Link Partners and Rick Yan, completed the acquisition of 51job, a Chinese HR company, for $4.3bn in a go-private transaction. The company announced the trading of its ADSs on the NASDAQ be suspended as of May 6, 2022.
51job was advised by Duff & Phelps, Kroll, Davis Polk & Wardwell, JunHe, Maples Group and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett. DCP Capital Partners was advised by Fangda Partners, Haiwen & Partners, Harney Westwood & Riegels, Kirkland & Ellis, Ogier, Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison and Weil Gotshal and Manges. Debt was provided by China Merchants Bank and Shanghai Pudong Development Bank. Recruit Holdings was advised by JP Morgan, Conyers Dill & Pearman and Sullivan & Cromwell. Sullivan & Cromwell was advised by White & Case.
Larsen & Toubro Infotech, a multinational conglomerate company, agreed to merge with Mindtree, an information technology services and consulting company, in a $17.7bn deal.
"This merger represents our continued commitment to grow the IT services business in line with our strategic vision. The highly complementary businesses of LTI and Mindtree will make this integration a 'win-win' proposition for our customers, investors, shareholders, and employees," A. M. Naik, LTI Chairman.
Mindtree is advised by Ernst & Young, Goldman Sachs, KPMG and J. Sagar Associates. Goldman Sachs is advised by Sullivan & Cromwell. LTI is advised by Citigroup, GT Valuation Advisors, Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas and Kroll.
Mengniu, a dairy product manufacturer, agreed to acquire a 25% stake in Yashili, a firm operating in the packaged foods industry, and a 20% stake in Inner Mongolia Dairy Joint Venture from Danone, a French multinational food-products corporation. Financial terms were not disclosed.
China remains highly strategic for Danone, and this transaction will notably allow the company to further expand its ability to locally manufacture products. In line with Danone's capital allocation priorities, the expected proceeds will be dedicated to further deleveraging the company.
Mengniu is advised by HSBC. Yashili is advised by Somerley Capital.
Danone, a French multinational food-products corporation, agreed to acquire Dumex Baby Food, a Chinese manufacturer of infant milk formula products, from Yashili, a firmenagaged in the packaged foods industry, for $130m.
The deal will allow Danone to further expand its ability to locally manufacture infant milk formula products. In line with Danone's capital allocation priorities, the expected proceeds will be dedicated to further deleveraging the company.
China Resources Enterprise, an internationalized business platform, and Fung Investments, a global investment company, agreed to form a $300m joint venture to make investments in offshore companies.
"The growth of Chinese consumerism is set to sustain growth and create abundant opportunities for consumer and lifestyle companies that are looking to do business in China. As more Chinese consumers are demanding for new, high‑quality brands, products, services and technologies, we are excited to join forces with CRE to invest in new consumption areas which offer great growth potential such as food, lifestyle, fashion and healthcare," Victor Fung, Fung Investments Chairman.
Investment firms Sequoia Capital India, Alpha Wave and Tiger Global led a $100m funding round in Absolute Foods, an Indian agriculture technology start-up.
"At Absolute, we are constantly fostering research to drive exponential innovations inspired by biology to create the next agricultural revolution that is resilient and sustainable. This capital helps us with technology expansion, hiring talent, and scaling to newer markets and segments," Agam Khare, Absolute Founder and CEO.
Greater Bay Technology raised $150m.
Greater Bay Technology, a Chinese new energy start which is incubated by GAC Group, an automaker, closed a $150m Series A funding round. The company reached the unicorn valuation of over $1bn with the completion of two venture rounds less than two years after its inception.
The startup said that the Series A round attracted investments from multiple investment institutions and existing shareholders, but it did not name the new investors. The startup plans to use the fresh capital to strengthen the R&D of its XFC technology, accelerate the manufacturing of XFC batteries, and promote the popularity of the overall XFC ecosystem.
Mahindra has no plans to split the company into three.
Mahindra, a producer of a wide range of vehicles, said it had no plans to restructure the company into three verticals, following a media report that said the company was considering splitting up into an electric vehicle, a tractor, and a passenger vehicle business through a demerger process, Reuters reported.
"The company considers it necessary to clarify to the stock exchanges that there are no plans to split the auto business of the company into three units," Mahindra.
Amber seeks funding at a $10bn valuation. (FS)
Amber Group, a provider of crypto financing, market making, and trading services, is mulling a fresh round of funding that would see the company at a valuation of $10bn, Bloomberg reported.
SK shieldus, a South Korean security services company, withdrew the prospectus for an IPO in Seoul as market volatility damps investor demand for new shares worldwide. The company said it had difficulty obtaining a proper valuation, Bloomberg reported.
Initial terms of the deal last month indicated the company and shareholders were aiming to raise as much as $825m by selling the stock at a range of $24.49 to $30.65 each. The offering was expected to be the largest in South Korea since LG Energy Solution in January raised $10.8bn.
KE Holdings plans Hong Kong listing.
KE Holdings, a Chinese property platform, said it would list its shares in Hong Kong without raising capital, as a growing number of US-listed Chinese firms carry out so-called "homecoming" listings. The company will start trading its stock on the Hong Kong exchange on May 11. KE Holdings will raise no capital and issue no new shares in what is termed a listing by introduction, Reuters reported.
The increased number of return-home deals has been triggered by American regulators' heightened scrutiny and stricter audit requirements for US-listed Chinese companies amid political tensions between the countries.
KE Holdings is advised by Goldman Sachs and China International Capital.
Delhivery and eMudhra get ready for IPO.
Delhivery, an Indian logistics firm, and eMudhra, a digital signature certificate provider, are set to go public this month on the heels of life insurance and investment corporation LIC's IPO, which is expected to raise the most significant funds in an IPO, DealStreetAsia reported.
Global IPO activity has slowed down recently as the Russian invasion of Ukraine and rising interest rates spurred market volatility. After a spectacular run in 2021, India’s primary market has also been off to a slow start this year, with only three companies— Adani Wilmar, Vedant Fashions, and AGS Transact Technologies — raising $1.08bn through IPOs so far. However, it e d that IPO offerings in India will regain momentum in the second half of this year as indicated by increasing activity in secondary share sales.
Weakness in GoTo shares may not dampen Indonesia’s IPO market.
The $1.1b IPO of GoTo, an application used for ride-hailing, food delivery, and other services, could inspire more local startups to pursue a listing on the local bourse.
The apparent weakness in GoTo’s shares since their listing on April 11, will not be much of a deterrent for the IPO hopefuls. Factors such as a surge in retail participation in the stock market, VCs looking for exits, and difficulty in raising capital from the private market could help add to the positive sentiment around IPO, DelaStreetAsia reported.
INA to raise $21bn by 2024. (FS)
The Indonesia Investment Authority, an Indonesia-based sovereign wealth fund, will raise a corpus of $21.14bn by 2024, DealStreetAsia reported.
This is a four-fold increase from the $5.2bn it had seeded by end-2021 from the Indonesian government — $2.08bn in cash and a total of $3.1bn in the form of an 8% stake in Bank Mandiri and a 3.36% stake in Bank Rakyat Indonesia, two state-owned lenders.
True North is considering raising its seventh fund. (FS)
True North, an India-based private equity firm, is on the road to raising its seventh fund as it looks to ramp up investments in the digital sector alongside traditional firms when deal activity in the country is witnessing robust action.
The firm is currently in talks with limited partners in the domestic and overseas market, DealStreetAsia reported.
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