Aquarian Holdings, a diversified holding company, agreed to acquire a majority stake in Somerset Reinsurance, a provider of reinsurance solutions for asset-intensive life insurance and annuity business, from Atlas Merchant Capital, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are very excited to have Somerset Re join the Aquarian platform. Since our launch, we have successfully partnered with premier insurers and asset managers to support their strategic growth. We look forward to further developing and scaling Somerset Re alongside CEO Jeff Burt and the management team, in partnership with their strong strategic shareholders," Rudy Sahay, Aquarian Founder and Managing Partner.
Somerset Re is advised by Barclays, Credit Agricole, Conyers Dill & Pearman and Mayer Brown. Aquarian is advised by Citigroup, RBC Capital Markets, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, Arthur Cox and Walkers.
Desert Peak Minerals, an independent Permian Basin pure-play mineral and royalty company, completed the merger with Falcon Minerals, a C-corporation formed to manage and acquire high growth oil-weighted mineral rights in premier US basins, in a $1.9bn deal to create Sitio Royalties.
"Sitio is guided by its commitments to best-in-class leadership and governance standards, capital discipline and a thoughtful approach to value-maximizing M&A. Sitio's distinguished profile as a leading consolidator in the minerals and royalties space will only continue to strengthen over time with the execution of our proven strategy, focusing on large-scale accretive acquisitions across diversified operators," Chris Conoscenti, Sitio CEO.
Desert Peak was advised by Vinson & Elkins. Falcon Minerals was advised by Barclays, Houlihan Lokey, Latham & Watkins, White & Case and Kekst CNC. Barclays was advised by Gibson Dunn & Crutcher.
Bain Capital, a private multi-asset alternative investment firm, completed a $250m investment in Cuisine Solutions, a sous vide foods producer.
"Stanislas, Felipe, and the management team have done an outstanding job building Cuisine Solutions into a clear leader in the fast-growing sous vide market that is recognized by many of the world's top chefs. The company's unique range of culinary innovations offer higher quality and consistency, better food safety, and lower costs, which is a win-win for their customers in the current macroeconomic environment," Cristian Jitianu, Bain Capital Managing Director.
Cuisine Solutions was advised by Moelis & Co, McDermott Will & Emery and R. Couri Hay. Bain Capital was advised by Bank of America, Kirkland & Ellis and Stanton PRM.
Greater Sum Ventures, a venture capital firm, completed the acquisition of a majority stake in Vehlo, a software solutions provider. GSV was joined by existing investors PSG, HarbourVest Partners, and Parkwood, and new investor Lightyear Capital. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Over the last several years, our partnership with GSV and PSG has enabled us to execute on our goal to bring a unified suite of software and financial solutions to the rapidly evolving auto repair industry, supporting our customer’s journey to exceed the expectations of today’s car owner. We look forward to continuing to work with GSV, PSG, HarbourVest and Parkwood, as well as our new partner Lightyear, as we provide our customers with the technology solutions they need to successfully manage and grow their businesses," Michelle Fischer, Vehlo CEO.
Vehlo was advised by Raymond James. PSG was advised by Weil Gotshal and Manges and Prosek Partners. Lightyear Capital was advised by Davis Polk & Wardwell and ThroughCo Communications. Greater Sum Ventures was advised by Willkie Farr & Gallagher.
KKR agreed to acquire a majority stake in apexanalytix, a provider of supply chain risk management software and services. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"apex sits at the intersection of multiple themes where we have had strong conviction over the past decade, including digitization and data-enabled platforms, the increasing fragmentation of global supply chains, and the rise of sophisticated technology solutions and tech-enabled services that can create operational efficiencies and generate tangible savings. We are excited to invest behind this exceptional team and to use our resources to help them continue to deliver best-in-class supply chain management solutions to customers around the world," Webster Chua, KKR Partner.
KKR is advised by UBS and Kirkland & Ellis. apexanalytix is advised by William Blair and K&L Gates.
Ferrovial, a transportation company, agreed to acquire a 51% stake in New Terminal One, the consortium appointed to design, build and operate the new Terminal One at JFK International Airport in New York, from The Carlyle Global, a private equity firm, for $1.14bn.
Under the deal, Ferrovial is acquiring 96% of The Carlyle Global Infrastructure Fund’s stake in New Terminal One. The completion of the transaction is subject to certain conditions precedent, including Port Authority Board approval.
The Sterling Group-backed Frontline Road Safety, a pavement safety services provider, completed the acquisition of Ozark Striping Company, a pavement marking contracting operations provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are excited to expand our footprint in the Southeast region by partnering with this best-in-class pavement marking firm and look forward to working with the outstanding team at Ozark. Ozark has a strong presence in Alabama and is a great addition to the Frontline family," Mitch Williams, Frontline Road Safety CEO.
The Sterling Group was advised by Willkie Farr & Gallagher.
Integrated Power Services, a company specialized in service and repair of electric motors, generators, power transmission and mechanical components, completed the acquisition of US and Canadian hydro generator rewind and transformer repair businesses of ABB, an automation company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“This transaction represents an exciting addition to our renewables portfolio and the power management and power distribution capabilities of our North American network. This business adds decades of General Electric intellectual property to our engineering portfolio. We look forward to introducing both existing and new customers of these businesses to IPS’s trusted advisor, single-source capabilities and our Unmatched Customer Experience," John Zuleger, IPS President and CEO.
Arcis Golf, an owner and operator of private, resort and daily fee club, completed the acquisition of Four Bridges Country Club from HPA Development Group, a real estate developer. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Four Bridges is an exceptional private club, and we are thrilled to be expanding our footprint in the Ohio market and, specifically, in the Cincinnati area. This addition to our portfolio of clubs will build upon our strategy of owning and operating outstanding properties within each of our respective hub markets," Blake Walker, Arcis Golf Founder and CEO.
Arcis Golf was advised by Hunter Public Relations.
Big Brand Tire & Service, a tire and automotive service provider, agreed to acquire 11 service centers from MPG Tire and Auto Service, a tire and automotive services provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are pleased to welcome the 11 MPG locations to the Big Brand family as we continue to expand our growing footprint and partner with best-in-class operators across the country. This latest transaction exemplifies our commitment to building a premier tire and automotive service platform through strategic acquisitions, new greenfield units, and investments in our industry-leading technology infrastructure. We look forward to working with the outstanding MPG team members and providing the highest standard of service and technology-driven solutions to customers across Tucson," Joe Buscaglia, Big Brand CEO.
Canada Nickel, a nickel focused exploration company, agreed to acquire Bannockburn Nickel Property from Grid Metals, an exploration and development company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The acquisition of Bannockburn is highly complementary to our southern cluster of properties at Sothman, Midlothian, and Powell. The Bannockburn "B" zone has already been successfully tested for 600 metres of its total 1.3 kilometre strike length with multiple intervals in excess of 0.3% nickel and has smaller, higher grade potential at other zones on the property. Historical mineral processing work confirmed presence of heazlewoodite, similar to Crawford, and the ability to generate a 35% nickel concentrate," Mark Selby, Canada Nickel Chairman and CEO.
Franchise Group enters exclusive talks over Kohl's sale.
Kohl's has entered exclusive negotiations with retail store operator Franchise Group over a potential sale of the department store chain, valuing it at nearly $8bn.
The bid of $60 per share constitutes a premium to Kohl's closing price of $42.12, giving it a market value of about $5.4bn. Kohl's said the deal is subject to board approval and provided no assurance that an agreement would be finalised, Reuters reported.
Tupperware brands enters into definitive agreement to sell its Nutrimetics beauty business.
Tupperware Brands, a global consumer products company, announces that it has entered into a definitive agreement for the sale of its Nutrimetics beauty business, which operates in Australia, New Zealand, and France. This transaction advances the Company's turnaround plan strategy of divesting non-core assets.
"We are pleased to have reached agreement to sell our Nutrimetics beauty business. We remain focused on executing on our turnaround plan, and the sale of our non-core assets, including Nutrimetics, aligns with this strategy by enabling the Company to increasingly focus on growing our core Tupperware brand. Our goal remains unchanged: to restore this iconic brand to sustained growth and deliver increased value to all stakeholders. This transaction represents yet another milestone along that path," Miguel Fernandez, Tupperware Brands President and Chief Executive Officer.
WILsquare Capital announces the sale of Crown Products. (FS)
WILsquare Capital, a private equity firm, announced the sale of Crown Products, a distributor of flooring and flooring installation products, to an unnamed bidder. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"It has been a pleasure to work with John DeYoung and his team in supporting numerous growth initiatives, and we could not be more pleased with the efforts of the WILsquare and Crown teams over the last four years to build Crown," James Wilmsen, WILsquare Partner.
Crown is advised by Stephens. WILsquare is advised by Winston & Strawn.
CBRE Global Investment Management has collected $599m for its Global Special Situations Fund. (FS)
The fund has beat its initial $500m target and 70% of the capital has been deployed for five investments including a last-mile logistics company in Europe, as well as a light industrial, a single-family rental and a self-storage business in the US.
The firm said the vehicle seeks to invest in real estate at an attractive basis due to liquidity or capital constraints. This will mainly be done through participations in recapitalizations and partial interests in assets.
EQT, a private equity company, and Mubadala Investment, a sovereign wealth fund, agreed to acquire Envirotainer, a temperature-controlled supply chain solutions provider, from Cinven, a private equity investment firm, and Novo Holdings, a life science investor, for $3bn.
"The support of Cinven and Novo Holdings has enabled us to continue to develop best-in-class solutions to support our clients and the healthcare industry, including the recently launched Releye platform and our new CryoSure solution which has enabled us to enter into a new and attractive part of the temperature-controlled transportation market. As a result, Envirotainer has continued to maintain a market-leading position and to serve all top pharmaceutical companies. We are very excited for the company's next chapter," Peter Gisel-Ekdahl, Envirotainer CEO.
EQT and Mubadala are advised by McKinsey & Company, Jefferies & Company, KPMG and White & Case. Cinven is advised by JP Morgan and Clifford Chance.
Sanoma, a learning and media company, agreed to acquire the K12 courseware business in Italy and Germany of Pearson, a education publishing and assessment service provider, for $203m.
"We see great potential in further digitalisation in Italy with the digital platforms and products we have in Sanoma Learning and that they have developed in the past years serving a 'parent paid' market. The use of digital and hybrid learning materials in Italy is still low with only 35% using hybrid materials. Sanoma plans to substantially invest in the development of digital learning platforms for secondary education in the next three years, which will strengthen our digital offering for secondary education not only in Italy, but also in our other countries. We are very excited about this acquisition, a great next step in our ambition to grow and increase our positive impact on learning," Rob Kolkman, Sanoma CEO.
Sanoma is advised by JP Morgan and Nordea Bank. Debt is provided by Nordea Bank, OP Corporate Bank and SEB Corporate Finance. Pearson is advised by BNP Paribas.
Canaccord Genuity Group, a global, full-service investment banking and financial services company, completed the acquisition of the wealth management unit of Punter Southall Group, a chartered financial planning and wealth management firm, for £164m ($205m).
"On behalf of the Punter Southall Wealth team, we are very pleased to be joining our new colleagues at Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management. We look forward to working closely together to grow our integrated wealth management business and advance our product and service offering for our valued clients," John Howard-Smith, Punter Southall Wealth CEO.
Canaccord Genuity was advised by Fenchurch Advisory Partners, Farrer & Co and HSBC. Punter Southall is advised by Spencer House and Ashurst.
Energy Capital Partners, a private equity firm, offered to acquire Biffa, a waste management company, for $1.7bn.
"The board of Biffa has concluded that should a firm offer be made on the same financial terms as the proposal it would be minded to recommend it to Biffa shareholders, subject to the agreement of other customary terms and conditions. Accordingly, on the basis of the proposal, the board has granted ECP access to due diligence materials. Biffa continues to trade well, with underlying performance being in line with the Board's expectations. Volumes have remained at expected levels and Biffa continues to mitigate inflationary headwinds," Biffa.
Biffa is advised by HSBC, Numis Securities, Rothschild & Co and Houston PR.
Poland's biggest oil refiner PKN Orlen and number two player Grupa Lotos said their management boards had approved plans for a merger first announced in 2018 but delayed by antitrust issues.
Both refiners are state controlled and the merger is part of a wider plan by Poland's ruling Law and Justice party to increase control over the economy and build big national companies to better compete with global players.
Shareholders of Lotos will get 1.075 shares of PKN for each Lotos share, the companies said. For the merger to take effect shareholders of both groups must approve the share exchange. Shareholders owning at least 80% of Lotos shares have to back the merger terms to approve it. Poland's State Treasury controls 53.2% of Lotos and 27.5% of Orlen. It plans to end up with a 35.7% stake after the merger, Reuters reported.
Lotos is advised by Rothschild & Co and Rymarz Zdort. PKN Orlen is advised by Citigroup.
Koch Disruptive Technologies, an investment firm led a $108m Series E funding round in Vayyar Imaging, a 4D imaging radar manufacturer, with participation from GLy Capital Management, Atreides Management, KDT, Battery Ventures, Bessemer Ventures, MoreVC, Regal Four and Claltech.
"KDT is excited to help further Vayyar's vision to improve the health and safety of people's lives at a global scale. Their 4D imaging technology is transforming the medical, smart home, elderly care, and automotive markets here in the U.S. and around the world. We look forward to helping accelerate their continued growth," Brett Chugg, KDT Senior Managing Director.
Actis set to complete stake sale of $1.8bn Lekela by July. (FS)
Buyout firm Actis is poised to sell its stake in Lekela Power, an Africa-focused renewable energy firm, as early as July, Bloomberg reported.
The private equity company has entered into exclusive talks with Infinity Power, a joint venture between Masdar and Egypt’s Infinity Energy, to buy the 60% stake. Lekela, which has renewable energy power projects in South Africa, Egypt, Senegal and Ghana, is valued at about $1.8bn.
FirstGroup shareholders have rebelled over a proposed $1.5bn takeover bid from I Squared. (FS)
I Squared’s bid, which values transport giant FirstGroup at up to $205 per share, includes $57 that is contingent upon the amount the bus and train group receives from the sale of its American businesses, including Greyhound, Proactive Investors reported.
FirstGroup’s biggest shareholder, Schroders, which holds nearly 18% of the company, called I Squared Capital’s offer “unattractive”, and said it failed to reflect FirstGroup’s weight in the UK’s railway sector.
Fresenius denies any decision to sell the FMC business.
German healthcare group Fresenius said that there has been no decision at all to sell its dialysis business Fresenius Medical Care.
If Fresenius decided to sell a stake in the Helios hospital chain it would involve a share in the Helios company, not individual hospitals or facilities, Reuters reported.
Intesa will scout for banks to buy as Ukraine implications become clearer.
Intesa Sanpaolo's private banking arm Fideuram will resume looking for acquisition targets in its key markets once the implications of the Ukraine crisis are clearer, Fideuram CEO Tommaso Corcos was quoted as saying.
Corcos said Fideuram would look to buy either single private banks or teams of bankers, Reuters reported.
Moralltach Global in advance talks to acquire a $125m whiskey distillery.
Moralltach Global, A low-key Irish investment company registered in Malta, announces it is in advanced talks for a project acquisition for a $125m Whiskey Distillery and Business Park seeking planning permission.
The project is a new Whiskey business backed by stakeholders with years of industry experience. The concept being from field to bottle production using sustainable farming practices from multi generational farming history that ensures the highest quality from raw ingredients through to finished liquid.
Spain’s Acerinox ends merger talks with Mittal’s Aperam.
Spanish stainless steelmaker Acerinox ended merger talks with rival Aperam, halting a potential combination that would have created the biggest producer of the metal in Europe.
Acerinox’s board “unanimously agreed not to continue with the preliminary conversations with Aperam to study a possible corporate operation,” the Madrid-based company said in a statement, without elaborating, Bloomberg reported.
Ted Baker shares slide after preferred bidder walks away.
Ted Baker shares tumbled by more than 20% after the company said its first-choice suitor had decided not to make an offer, forcing the British fashion chain to consider other options, Reuters reported
"With record-low UK consumer confidence, the cost-of-living crisis, the possibility of a recession and shaky equity markets, it is understandable that Ted Baker is desperate for a buyer," Victoria Scholar, Interactive Investor Head of Investment.
PIF-backed Americana Group adds Morgan Stanley to $8bn IPO. (FS)
Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund-backed Americana Group, the operator of KFC and Pizza Hut restaurants across the Middle East and North Africa has added Morgan Stanley to work on a planned initial public offering that could value the firm at around $8bn. Americana Group has started preparations for a dual listing in Riyadh and Abu Dhabi, Bloomberg reported.
If Americana decides to proceed with a listing, it will come amid a boom for IPOs in the Middle East. Listings on Gulf stock exchanges are on track for their best-ever first half as high oil prices and broad economic reforms draw investors to the region.
Americana Group is advised by Morgan Stanley, First Abu Dhabi Bank, Goldman Sachs and SNB Capital.
Prime Infra Holdings, a utility and infrastructure company, agreed to acquire a majority stake in Malampaya gas field, a natural gas field, from Udenna, a holding company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We look forward to this opportunity to partner with Prime Infrastructure and PNOC EC, as we explore more ways to fulfill our common vision to make Malampaya sustain its capability to meet the urgent energy security need of the Philippines,” Dennis Uy, Udenna Chairman and CEO.
China’s Yankuang Energy said that it was open to negotiations to buy the remaining shares in its majority-owned unit Yancoal Australia, after the Australian coal firm rejected a $1.8bn offer.
Yankuang, which owns 62.26% of Yancoal‘s shares, said last month that it was considering offering Yancoal shareholders $3.60 per share in convertible bonds for the remaining 498m shares not held by the company, which is a discount to the market price.
Yancoal said an independent committee it appointed to evaluate the potential transaction unanimously concluded that an acquisition by Yankuang would not be in the best interests of Yancoal‘s minority shareholders, DealStreetAsia reported.
Sequoia China, a VC firm, led a $210m Series A funding round in Envision Digital, a digital solutions provider for net zero, with participation from GIC.
"Climate change and the transition to carbon neutrality is one of the greatest challenges humankind has faced. Envision Digital is a visionary innovator in this field and has helped to reduce carbon emissions across multiple industries, including retail, finance, transportation and manufacturing. This investment continues to put Sequoia China at the forefront of supporting the race to net zero carbon emissions globally," Neil Shen, Sequoia China Founding and Managing Partner.
J&T Express, an international express logistics company, completed the acquisition of a 30-acre parcel of land in Malaysia for $136m.
"As a global integrated logistics service provider, J&T Express is committed to providing customers with more efficient and convenient services. It remains our emphasis to strengthen our leadership position in Southeast Asia through expanding our presence in existing markets. The new facility will be fitted with our advanced technology, which enables us to better tap on our existing networks to meet the growing demands of the burgeoning e-commerce industry in Southeast Asia," Charles Hou, J&T Express Vice President.
Westbridge, a private equity firm, and GSV Ventures, a venture firm, led a $100m Series A funding round in PhysicsWallah, an ed-tech startup.
"While many pundits say that the bloom is off the rose for Indian edtech, we at GSV Ventures believe the flowers are just beginning to bloom as extraordinary entrepreneurs are democratizing learning and skills delivery for the 90% of India still untouched by the edtech revolution," Deborah Quazzo, GSV Ventures Managing Partner.
Tencent-backed G7 Connect, a fleet management company, agreed to merge with Alibaba-backed E6 Technology. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Freight managers in China have strong demand for digitizing their business through the adoption of enterprise software services and the combination will allow the two companies to invest more in technology and create higher value for customers," Zhai Xuehun, G7 Connect Co-Founder and CEO.
ByteDance said to weigh sale of stake in sneaker reseller Poizon.
ByteDance is considering selling a minority stake in Poizon, an online marketplace for sneakers, Bloomberg reported.
The TikTok owner has engaged in talks about a sale of a low single-digit percentage-point stake, and would prefer to sell to an existing investor. Poizon, formally known as Shanghai Shizhuang Information Technology, is valued at more than $10bn.
Japan’s Mizuho Bank to shore up startup financing, says CEO Kato.
Mizuho Financial Group’s main banking unit plans to boost financing for startup firms, its chief executive said, aiming at addressing Japan’s scarcity of valuable new companies, DealStreetAsia reported.
“We view our business with startups as crucial, because we want to drive changes in Japan,” Masahiko Kato, Mizuho Bank CEO.
Singapore eyes listings as China firms hedge political risk.
Singapore Exchange, which has seen stock listings dwindle over the years, is betting on a reversal in fortunes as companies in China look to hedge political risks and Southeast Asia’s unicorns seek to tap the market, Bloomberg reported.
The bourse may see 30 to 40 first-time and secondary listings annually within the next five years, Pol de Win, SGX’s head of global sales and origination, said in an interview more than double the average of about 13 listings a year since 2017. SGX is stepping up talks with Chinese firms that are seeking alternatives to a US or Hong Kong listing as well as to raise their profiles in Southeast Asia.
Thai Life Insurance prepares for $1b IPO in country’s biggest this year.
Thai Life Insurance is starting to meet investors ahead of a planned $1bn initial public offering that would be Thailand’s largest in 2022.
A listing of $1bn would be a boon for Asia’s capital markets which have struggled to attract new IPOs because of volatility in financial markets, DealStreetAsia reported.
North Star defers IPO on inflation, market concerns.
Philippine firm North Star Meat Merchants is deferring up to 4.5bn pesos ($85m) initial public offering because of increased market volatility and concerns about inflation.
The decision is the latest among a series of uncertainty-driven listing postponements in Asia, as financial markets reel from elevated inflation and the Ukraine-Russia crisis, DealStreetAsia reported.
Bain raises $2bn in biggest Asia special situation pool. (FS)
Bain Capital raised $2bn for its second special situations fund, giving it the biggest pool of capital focusing on complex and structured credit and equity investments in Asia-Pacific.
The second pool of cash is double the size of its first fund and the amount raised exceeded the $1.5bn target, the Boston-based asset. It will also receive $650m each from separately managed accounts and its India Resurgence Fund, and a one-third contribution from its $4bn global fund, Barnaby Lyons, global co-head of special situations, Bloomberg reported.
China-focused IDG Capital raising $900m for new VC fund. (FS)
IDG Capital, a venture capital firm that focuses on Chinese businesses, is in the market to raise $900m for a new VC vehicle, its latest filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission showed.
The filing for IDG China Venture Capital Fund VII comes about two years after the firm, which has offices in Beijing, Hong Kong, New York, and London, filed to raise $688m for the predecessor fund, DealStreetAsia reported.
SE Asian PE major Northstar seeks over $100m for first VC fund. (FS)
Southeast Asian private equity major Northstar Group, which has backed the likes of GoTo, Tiki and Bank Jago, is seeking to raise over $100m for a new vehicle targeting smaller ticket-sized deals, DealStreetAsia reported.
The fund, which is most likely to be called Northstar Ventures, will invest between $1m and $10m per deal, multiple sources aware of the development.
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