Kansas City Southern has backed a sweetened $33.7bn offer from Canadian National in a blow to rival Canadian Pacific, as the bidding war for the railway operator heats up, FTreported.
CN has offered to pay KCS shareholders $200 in cash and 1.129 of its stock, up from $200 in cash and 1.059 shares of CN common stock. CP has five days to come back with a superior offer, which would have to at least bridge the about 20% premium offered by CN, in what has become a closely fought takeover battle.
“After consultation with the company’s outside legal and financial advisers, the KCS board of directors determined that CN’s revised proposal constitutes a ‘Company Superior Proposal’ as defined in KCS’s merger agreement with Canadian Pacific Railway,” KCS.
Kansas City is advised by Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, Baker & Miller, Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg, Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz, White & Case, WilmerHale and Joele Frank. Financial advisors are advised by Willkie Farr & Gallagher. Canadian National is advised by JP Morgan, RBC Capital Markets, Cravath Swaine & Moore, Norton Rose Fulbright, Sidley Austin, Stikeman Elliott, Torys, Brunswick Group and Longview Communications. Canadian Pacific is advised by BMO Capital Markets, Evercore, Goldman Sachs, Bennett Jones, Blake Cassels & Graydon, Creel Garcia-Cuellar Aiza y Enriquez, David L Meyer, Sullivan & Cromwell and Edelman. Financial advisors are advised by Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson.
7-Eleven, an American international chain of convenience stores, completed the acquisition of the Speedway gas station chain from Marathon Petroleum, an American petroleum refining, marketing, and transportation company, for $21bn.
"Speedway is a great brand and a strong strategic fit for our business that significantly diversifies our presence throughout the North American market, particularly in the Midwest and on the East Coast. Together, we have the opportunity to redefine and enhance the customer convenience experience nationwide. This is a groundbreaking moment in our company's proud history," Joe DePinto, 7-Eleven President and CEO.
7-Eleven was advised by Credit Suisse, Nomura, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, Nishimura & Asahi and Brunswick Group. Debt financing was provided by Credit Suisse and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. Debt providers were advised by Davis Polk & Wardwell. Financial advisors were advised by Alston & Bird and White & Case. Marathon Petroleum was advised by Barclays, Evercore, JP Morgan and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz.
The US Federal Reserve has approved the $11.6bn acquisition of the US operations of Spanish lender BBVA, by PNC Financial Services Group. The regulatory approval process also included approvals from the Banking Departments of the States of Alabama and Texas. No further regulatory approvals are required to complete the acquisition and merger of PNC Bank and BBVA USA.
The acquisition is anticipated to close June 1, 2021, pending satisfaction of customary closing conditions. Upon closing, PNC will be the fifth largest US commercial bank with over $560bn in assets and a presence in 29 of the 30 largest markets in the US.
"We are pleased to have received regulatory approval of our acquisition that will accelerate our growth trajectory and drive long-term shareholder value. With common cultures and values and a shared commitment to our customers, employees and communities, we look forward to bringing PNC's industry-leading technology and innovative products and services to new markets and clients," William S. Demchak, PNC Chairman, President and CEO.
PNC Financial is advised by Bank of America, Citigroup, Evercore, PNC Financial Services and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz. Financial advisors are advised by Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton. BBVA is advised by BBVA, JP Morgan, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Sullivan & Cromwell.
Grupo Comercial Chedraui, a Mexican grocery store and department store chain operator, agreed to acquire Smart & Final, a chain of warehouse-style food and supply stores, from Apollo Global Management, a private equity firm, from $620m.
"Under the ownership of Grupo Comercial Chedraui and Bodega Latina, Smart & Final will benefit from their guidance given their recognized and established position in the food retail space while contributing our own best practices and experience. Together we will further accelerate our collective growth. We are excited about the future as we embark on a new chapter in our history with a partner that is aligned and understands our strengths, culture and customer-centric philosophy. We would like to thank Apollo for its partnership and support in helping us grow our business to where we are today," David Hirz, Smart & Final CEO.
Smart & Final is advised by Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Lewis & Bockius and KCPR. GCC is advised by RBC Capital Markets, Bufete Robles Miaja and Sidley Austin. Financial advisors are advised by Galicia Abogados and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom.
Teledyne, a provider of instrumentation, digital imaging products and software, completed the acquisition of FLIR Systems, an industrial technology company focused on intelligent sensing solutions for defense and industrial applications, for $8.2bn. FLIR stockholders received $28 per share in cash and 0.0718 shares of Teledyne common stock for each FLIR share, which implies a total price of $57 per FLIR share.
“We appreciate the support from our stockholders, and I am delighted to welcome FLIR to the Teledyne family. As a combined company, Teledyne FLIR will uniquely provide a full spectrum of imaging technologies and products spanning X-ray through infrared and from components to complete imaging systems. Teledyne FLIR will also provide a complete range of unmanned systems and imaging payload across all domains ranging from deep sea to deep space," Robert Mehrabian, Teledyne Executive Chairman.
FLIR Systems was advised by Goldman Sachs, Hogan Lovells and Joele Frank. Goldman Sachs was advised by Sullivan & Cromwell. Teledyne was advised by Evercore and McGuireWoods. Evercore was advised by Cravath Swaine & Moore. Debt financing was provided by Bank of America.
Genstar Capital, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire a majority stake in Vector Solutions, a provider of industry-focused software solutions, from Golden Gate Capital, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in the next 45 days.
"Genstar's interest in Vector Solutions is a testament to our consistent growth, talented team and the exceptional value of our leading solutions. We are excited to have the support of Genstar and Golden Gate Capital as we continue to serve everyday heroes by delivering intelligent software solutions that empower safer, smarter and better decisions," Marc Scheipe, Vector Solutions CEO.
Vector Solutions and Golden Gate Capital are advised by Robert W Baird, William Blair & Co, Nob Hill, Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison and Trenam-Kemker. Genstar Capital is advised by Kirkland & Ellis and Chris Tofalli Public Relations. Golden Gate is advised by Sard Verbinnen & Co.
A consortium of private equity firms including Clayton Dubilier & Rice, Partners Group, Northwestern Mutual, and Marathon Asset Management, completed a $240m investment in Healogics, a provider of world-class wound care.
"This transaction demonstrates strong support and confidence in Healogics's business and long-term growth plan. With this new capital, we are well-positioned to further improve our operational capacity to expand the reach of our essential care to patients in need," David Bassin, Healogics CEO.
Healogics was advised by Evercore, FTI Consulting, Weil Gotshal and Manges and Joele Frank. Marathon was advised by Prosek Partners. Investors were advised by GLC Advisors and Ropes & Gray.
Guild Holdings, a growth-oriented mortgage company, agreed to acquire Residential Mortgage Services Holdings, a mortgage financing company, for $197m.
"Leveraging Guild’s technology, in-house servicing platform and enhanced access to the capital markets will enable us to further expand our value to our customers, provide new opportunities for our employees and continue growing our market share in the Northeast," Jim Seely, RMS President and CEO.
RMS is advised by Houlihan Lokey, Buckley Sandler and Winston & Strawn. Guild Holdings is advised by STRATMOR Group, Wells Fargo Securities, Mayer Brown and Nuffer Smith Tucker.
General Mills, a global food company, agreed to acquire the pet treats business of Tyson Foods, a protein-focused food company, for $1.2bn.
“This acquisition advances our Accelerate strategy and further reshapes our portfolio for growth by adding an attractive business to our fast-growing Pet platform. Today’s announcement reinforces our commitment to using all capital allocation levers – including investment in the business, dividend growth, strategic acquisitions, and share repurchases - to drive top-tier shareholder returns over the long term," Jeff Harmening, General Mills Chairman and CEO.
General Mills is advised by Barclays and Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath. Tyson Foods is advised by Bank of America Hogan Lovells and Siebert Williams Shank.
Roark Capital, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire Nothing Bundt Cakes, an operator of gourmet bakeries, from Levine Leichtman Capital Partners, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Today marks an important milestone for the Company, and we would like to thank LLCP for their close relationship with our team and for their valuable contributions and strategic insight over the years. LLCP's deep expertise in franchising combined with their management-centric approach made for the perfect partner in scaling our business and further developing our one-of-a-kind brand," Nothing Bundt Cakes, Kyle Smith, President and CEO.
Nothing Bundt Cakes is advised by North Point Advisors, Robert W Baird and Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn. Levine Leichtman is advised by Kekst CNC. Roark Capital is advised by Barclays.
Facebook has lost an appeal over an investigation by the UK competition watchdog into its acquisition of Giphy, a short video-sharing platform.
The watchdog began the initial investigation in January, when Facebook was under intense scrutiny over competition and privacy concerns. The CMA ordered the two companies to keep their businesses separate, not to integrate their IT systems or customers lists, and not to exchange sensitive information during the probe. The tech firm went to the Court of Appeal last month to again challenge the terms of the orderm arguing it was excessively broad and applied indiscriminately to Facebook’s entire global business.
“The central problem in this case was entirely of Facebook’s own making. Facebook made requests to vary the terms of the IEO and then sat on its hands, refusing to answer the CMA’s questions. Facebook was entirely the author of its own misfortune” because of its failure to provide information to the CMA, which would then have “dealt with its carve-out requests properly," Sir Geoffrey Vos, Judge.
Giphy was advised by JP Morgan and Gunderson Dettmer Stough Villeneuve Franklin & Hachigian. Facebook was advised by Latham & Watkins.
Green Dot, a financial technology, agreed to acquire the tax refund business of Republic Bank & Trust Company, a bak holding company, for $165m.
“TRS’s long-term contributions to our success have been tremendous and we believe there continues to be a bright future for the tax business. We are confident Green Dot will continue to provide TRS’s clients and business partners the service they have come to expect. We’re very much looking forward to working with Green Dot on the transition over the coming months. All TRS business partners, clients and associates can be assured that Republic Bank and Green Dot are both committed to a smooth process for all. In transitions such as this, the people who will be impacted are top of mind, and we are very excited that Green Dot will maintain the associates primarily dedicated to the TRS business," Steve Trager, Republic Bank Chairman & CEO.
Green Dot is advised by Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe. Republic Bank is advised by Piper Sandler and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz.
Glatfelter, a global supplier of engineered materials, completed the acquisition of the US nonwovens business of Georgia-Pacific, an American pulp and paper company based in Atlanta, Georgia, for $175m.
"By leveraging these assets and employee talents, we are confident the synergies from this acquisition will attractively position us to capture and service long-term demand for health and hygiene products. We believe today’s announcement further reinforces our ongoing commitment to make meaningful investments that add scale to the business and enhance Glatfelter’s value in the markets we serve,” Dante C. Parrini, Glatfelter Chairman & CEO.
Glatfelter was advised by Credit Suisse and Shearman & Sterling.
HIG Capital, a global alternative investment firm, completed the investment in Homewerks Worldwide, an innovator in the kitchen, bathroom, and plumbing home improvement categories. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We believe our customers and employees will benefit greatly from this partnership and are looking forward to the exciting next steps in Homewerks’ growth journey," Peter Berkman, Homewerks CEO.
Homewerks Worldwide was advised by Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom. HIG was advised by McDermott Will & Emery.
Alex Rodriguez and Marc Lore agreed to acquire basketball clubs Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx, from Glen Taylor for $1.5bn.
"Glen Taylor has reached an agreement with Marc Lore and Alex Rodriguez regarding the sale and future ownership of the Timberwolves and Lynx. The transaction will close following league approval, beginning the transition of ownership and a new chapter of Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx basketball," Minnesota Lynx.
Alex Rodriguez is advised by Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz.
Floor & Decor, a specialty retailer of hard surface flooring, agreed to acquire Spartan Surfaces, a distributer of home furnishing, for $90m. The transaction is expected to close in Q2 FY2021.
"We have seen strong growth in our commercial business over the last several years by providing a simplified, reliable and lower-cost solution for commercial projects that leverages our merchandise sourcing and supply chain infrastructure," Tom Taylor, Floor & Decor CEO.
Cisco, an American multinational technology conglomerate, agreed to acquire Kenna Security, a developer of risk intelligence and vulnerability management platform. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Our goal is to unify all critical control points into a single platform. With the addition of Kenna Security, we will fundamentally strengthen our platform experience by giving customers the ability to prioritize vulnerabilities based on a robust risk methodology that is tuned to their unique needs," Jeetu Patel, Cisco Security Senior Vice President and General Manager.
Consortium led by BTG Pactual’s Timberland Investment Group, along with British Columbia Investment Management, and APG, agreed to acquire Chilean timberland assets of Celulosa Arauco y Constitucion, a Chilean wood pulp, engineered wood and forestry company, for $386m.
The transaction is comprised of approximately 80.5k hectares of high-quality, sustainably-managed timberlands in the central and southern regions of Chile and will establish the consortium’s timberland presence in the country.
“The Timberland Investment Group has been searching for an opportunity to establish our presence in Chile for more than a decade. This transaction offers both the scale and high-sustainability requirements we’ve been looking for and we are pleased to be investing alongside BCI and APG, two of the world’s leading institutional investors," Gerrity Lansing, BTG Pactual Head of TIG and MD Partner.
Fidelity Management & Research Company, a private equity firm, led a $225m Series F round in MasterClass, an online education streaming platform. Additional investors include Baillie Gifford, Balyasny Asset Management, Eldridge, IVP, Javelin, NEA, 01 Advisors, Atomico, Bonnier, Cleo Capital, Dan Capital, NewView Capital, NextEquity Partners, Outlier Ventures, Powerhouse Capital, RPS Ventures, Family Office of Ronald Lauder and UTA Ventures.
"Over the past several years we have seen a surge in subscriber growth as people are driven to fulfill their desire for lifelong learning outside of the confines of traditional education - MasterClass enables that, with our incredible roster of instructors, cinematic production capabilities and singular focus on restoring the joy of learning. We are grateful to our investors for their support and this new funding, which will enable us to enhance our global offering for subscribers and capture the meaningful market opportunity we see," David Rogier, MasterClass Founder and CEO.
Bain Capital, a private equity firm, completed a $150m investment in Axtria, a cloud software and data analytics provider.
"In choosing Bain Capital Tech Opportunities to be our growth partner, we have found a firm that believes in our vision of leveraging technology to help the life sciences industry accelerate therapeutic commercialization and has an exceptional track record of scaling enterprise SaaS companies. With this significant funding, we are doubling down on our commitment to make the industry future-ready with record investments in our SaaS products," Jassi Chadha, Axtria CEO.
Wolters Kluwer, a financial performance management platform provider, completed the acquisition of Vanguard Software, a global provider of cloud-based integrated business planning solutions, for $110m.
“Wolters Kluwer and Vanguard share a customer-focused approach in providing innovative, cloud-based solutions that enable organizations to be more accurate, efficient, and productive in how they plan and forecast across key areas of operations,” Rob Suggs, Vanguard CEO.
Regent, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire Club Monaco, a high-end casual clothing retailer, from Ralph Lauren, an American fashion company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Club Monaco is a beloved brand with a modern style, loyal customer base and long runway for growth. We see tremendous opportunity for Club Monaco and are excited to leverage our retail and e-commerce expertise to build upon the strong brand that the Ralph Lauren team built over two decades of stewardship," Michael Reinstein, Regent Chairman.
Adidas sale of Reebok could fetch only $1bn.
Though Adidas‘ sale of Reebok is only in its operational phase, the major German sportswear giant could net just only $1bn. The amount is nearly $3bn less than the original acquisition price of $3.8bn in 2005.
Adidas is reportedly ready to begin considering offers next week. Companies interested in the purchae include Chinese groups, Anta Sports and Li-Ning, as well as Korean Fila and American player, Wolverine World Wide which already produces footwear for Harley-Davidson and Caterpillar. Other contenders include, TPG Capital, Sycamore Partners, Cerberus Capital Management and Apollo Global Management. In 2020, Reebok reported a record drop in sales of more than 19%, falling to $1.69bn from $3.62bn.
"After careful consideration we have come to the conclusion that Reebok and Adidas will be able to reach their growth potential by operating independently of each other. We will work diligently over the next few months to ensure a fruitful future for the Reebok brand and the team that supports it,” Kasper Rorsted, Adidas CEO said last February.
GTCR weighs a $1bn sale of TerSera Therapeutics. (FS)
Chicago-based private equity firm GTCR is considering a sale of TerSera Therapeutics, which could value the specialty pharmaceutical company at more than $1bn.
GTCR is working with financial advisers on the potential sale of the Deerfield, Illinois-based firm. Other buyout firms and pharmaceutical companies have expressed preliminary interest in acquiring the company,Bloomberg reported.
Adani Green in advanced talks to acquire SoftBank-backed SB Energy for c. $650m. (FS)
Adani Green Energy, majority-owned by Indian billionaire Gautam Adani, is in advanced talks to acquire SoftBank-backed SB Energy Holdings, an energy holding company, for more than $650m. Adani Green is exploring a buyout of the renewable energy company through an all-stock deal.
SoftBank was earlier planning to sell its 80% stake in SB Energy, which has a 7.7GW solar power portfolio in India, for an estimated $525m to Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. The remaining stake is held by Bharti Enterprises. Bank of America and Barclays were handling the sale process.
Diversified Energy to keep growing US natural gas output by acquisitions.
Diversified Energy's CEO expects the natural gas production company to keep growing through US acquisitions, Reuters reported.
"I think the size of the company will grow substantially over the next several months," Rusty Hutson, Diversified Energy CEO.
Control of Tribune looks set to go to hedge fund. (FS)
Tribune journalists took to the streets over the weekend to voice their disapproval of the likely sale of one of America’s largest newspaper companies to Alden, a hedge fund that has been a leading consolidator in the beleaguered local news industry, FTreported.
The local mayor and a senator joined in to urge shareholders of Tribune Publishing to vote against a takeover by Alden.
The transaction would place the fate of the local US news business more firmly in the hands of financial groups. With only days to go before the shareholder vote on May 21, control of Tribune appears likely to go to Alden, the largest stockholder, which in February struck a deal to buy the rest of the company, valuing it at $630m.
Brookfield picks Bank of America and JP Morgan for Clarios IPO. (FS)
Brookfield Asset Management has chosen Bank of America and JP Morgan to lead the initial public offering of car battery manufacturer Clarios. Brookfield, which acquired Clarios in 2019, is seeking to have the portfolio company valued at more than $20bn in an IPO.
Brookfield is aiming to list the business in July, though its plans could still change. The banks are coordinating a group that is expected to include Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, Bloomberg reported.
Marqeta filed for an IPO.
Payment card issuer Marqeta filed to go public in a US IPO.
Marqeta shares have been trading on the secondary market for $33 to $35 each. Based on a total of 484m Class A and Class B shares, as listed in the prospectus, that values the company at about $16bn to $17bn.
Brookfield aims to raise $100bn for new flagship funds. (FS)
Brookfield Asset Management said it plans to raise $100bn for its next round of flagship funds after it delivered first-quarter earnings buoyed by share sales and asset divestitures, Bloombergreported.
The Toronto-based alternative asset manager sold $13bn of assets during the quarter, resulting in $6.4bn in profit for Brookfield and its clients, the company said. Brookfield Asset Management’s share amounted to $1.8bn. CEO Bruce Flatt called it an “exceptional” result.
“In the current low interest-rate environment, demand for the type of assets we own is strong. Many of our businesses are critical infrastructure assets that are underpinned by long-dated, contracted or regulated cash flows. With the capital markets being highly accommodative, we have been monetizing assets. Brookfield is also in the midst of closing a new debt fund and aims to launch new infrastructure and private equity funds in the next 12 months as part of its plan to raise $100bn across its flagship funds,” Bruce Flatt.
Veolia Environnement finalized a deal to buy Suez, reinforcing its global leadership in water and waste-treatment following a lengthy takeover battle, Bloombergreported.
The agreement announced builds on a preliminary accord between the two utilities last month and includes a commitment to sell back about two-fifths of its rival to a Franco-US group of investors. The deal allows Veolia to proceed with a full takeover of Suez in the coming months by acquiring the roughly 70% of the company it doesn’t already own, pending some regulatory approvals.
Suez is advised by Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Rothschild & Co, Societe Generale, Bredin Prat, Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier, Sullivan & Cromwell and Brunswick Group. Ardian is advised by Linklaters and Headland Consultancy. Veolia is advised by Bank of America, Citigroup, Credit Agricole, HSBC, Messier Maris & Associes, Morgan Stanley, Perella Weinberg Partners, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, Flichy Grange Avocats, Gide Loyrette Nouel, Hogan Lovells, Patrice Gassenbach, Peltier Juvigny Marpeau & Associes, Xavier Boucobza and Image Sept. Engie is advised by BNP Paribas, Centerview Partners, Credit Suisse, Lazard, d'Angelin & Co, Weil Gotshal and Manges, Estudio de Comunicacion and Havas Paris.
I Squared Capital, a private equity firm, completed the acquisition of Atlantic Power, an independent power producer, for $961m.
"The independent directors of the Board, with the assistance of our financial and legal advisors, carefully analyzed I Squared Capital's offer, and after extensive negotiation and thorough consideration, concluded that the agreement is in the best interests of Atlantic Power," Kevin T. Howell, Atlantic Power Chairman.
Atlantic Power was advised by Blair Franklin Capital Partners, Goldman Sachs, Kingsdale Advisors, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and Goodmans. Financial advisors were advised by Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom. I Squared Capital was advised by RBC Capital Markets, Sidley Austin, Stikeman Elliott and Brunswick Group.
Private equity group Cinven confirmed that it made a $1.9bn offer for Sanne, a fund administration business that provides alternative asset and corporate services, which it said was subsequently rejected.
The private equity group has until June 11 to make a firm offer for the FTSE 250 company or walk away. Cinven said that it is considering its position and that there is no certainty any further offer will be made.
Sanne Group is advised by JP Morgan, Jefferies & Company and Tulchan Communications. Cinven is advised by Goldman Sachs and FTI Consulting.
Graphic Packaging Holding Company, a provider of container packaging solutions, agreed to acquire AR Packaging, a provider of sustainable packaging solutions, from CVC, a private equity firm, for $1.45bn.
"Graphic Packaging's shared approach to customer service and deep focus on providing innovative, sustainable solutions closely aligns with how we operate our own business, making them an ideal partner. The ability to leverage beneficial value chain integration, from paperboard manufacturing to carton converting, provides increased possibilities to offer sustainably optimized solutions to our customers. Our team looks forward to joining with the Graphic Packaging team to become the premier global provider of sustainable fiber-based packaging solutions," Harald Schulz, AR Packaging President and CEO.
AR Packaging is advised by Credit Suisse and Roschier Attorneys. Graphic Packaging is advised by Bank of America and DLA Piper.
Private equity firm Darwin Alternatives’ Darwin Bereavement Services Fund, agreed to acquire Memoria, a developer and operator of high-quality, private crematoria and memorial parks. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Memoria is a transformational acquisition for our DBS Fund. We share Memoria’s vision and mission to provide an exceptional service to bereaved families and to serve our communities compassionately. I look forward to working with him, Jamieson and the rest of the Memoria team to realise our shared vision for contemporary funeral care. This acquisition further reinforces the sustainable, predictable, uncorrelated income stream we can deliver to our investors," James Penney, Darwin Alternatives Chairman.
Private equity firms Reatile Group and IDEAS Fund, agreed to acquire a 30% stake in Republic of Mozambique Pipeline Investments Company, a gas pipeline firm, from Sasol, an integrated energy and chemical company, for $361m.
SSA will retain a 20% shareholding in ROMPCO and will continue to operate and maintain the pipeline in terms of the commercial agreement between Sasol and ROMPCO, which is independent of the proposed transaction. It is expected that the proposed transaction will become effective during the second half of calendar year 2021.
Eni working with banks on retail-renewable spinoff. (FS)
Italian energy group Eni has picked Goldman Sachs and Mediobanca to work on the planned spinoff of its new retail and renewable business, Reutersreported.
In April Eni approved the launch of a strategic project to list or sell a minority stake in the unit as part of the company’s energy transition strategy.
The business, which includes renewable power generation and energy sales to customers, could be worth in the region of $12bn.
Greiner is preparing a $915m takeover offer for Recticel.
Greiner, an Austrian plastic maker, is preparing $915 a takeover offer for Recticel, a Belgian foam company.
Greiner is buying Cie. du Bois Sauvage SA’s 27% stake in the company for $16.4 per share and plans to offer the same price to other investors. The Austrian firm is seeking a majority stake in Recticel and aims to keep its listing on the Euronext Brussels exchange.
Allianz GI evaluates options in the asset management sector. (FS)
Allianz Global Investors, the investment management arm of German group Allianz, is evaluating opportunities for consolidation in the asset management sector, CEO Tobias Pross told.
Pross said Allianz GI could pursue deals to widen or strengthen our client coverage, though only if there is clear and tangible value creation, Reutersreported.
“We are potentially interested only in those opportunities that ... are consistent with our value proposition and the needs of our clients: we see ourselves as a hunter but a demanding and selective one,” Tobias Pross.
Anima CEO sees opportunities from possible UniCredit M&A move.
Alessandro Melzi d’Eril, CEO of Italian asset manager Anima, said a potential takeover by UniCredit of rival lenders Banco BPM and Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena - two of his main clients - would offer the company an opportunity to expand its business, Bloombergreported.
“A three-way merger among two of our main partners and Italy’s second-biggest bank would be the best scenario for Anima, giving us enormous opportunities. Among all possible M&A options, this combination would allow Anima to consolidate and stabilize its distribution network through Banco BPM and Paschi,” Melzi d’Eril.
Stifel and Tilney Smith in talks to acquire Davy Stockbrokers.
American investment bank Stifel and British wealth manager Tilney Smith & Williamson are vying with Bank of Ireland to acquire Davy Stockbrokers, with a deadline of the end of July set for the selection of a preferred bidder, The Times reported.
A consortium of private equity players may have also lodged an initial bid for the firm. Davy was put on the market in March after it was fined $3.5m by the Central Bank of Ireland. The country’s largest stockbroker was fined after lapses in compliance were uncovered in the purchase of Anglo Irish Bank bonds by company executives.
Orange considers bidding for a minority stake in Ethio Telecom.
Orange is interested in acquiring a minority stake in Ethio Telecom, Ethiopia’s state-owned telecom monopoly as a part of the country’s privatization of the industry, Bloomberg reported.
A successful sale of the stake in Ethio Telecom would deliver a boost to a wider liberalization intended to generate foreign exchange and improve service for the nation’s 110m people - the second-highest population in Africa. Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s administration has made privatization a key part of its plan for economic reform, aiming to boost investment and jobs.
Schroders studied M&G deal to build $1tn fund manager. (FS)
Schroders spent months exploring a potential acquisition of M&G, a deal that would have created a UK fund powerhouse overseeing more than $1tr of assets, Bloombergreported.
London-based Schroders was working with a partner earlier this year to consider a breakup of M&G by splitting its asset management operations from its retirement and insurance unit. It recently abandoned the idea after deciding M&G would be too expensive.
The deliberations by Schroders, already the UK's biggest standalone asset manager, never led to any formal discussions with M&G.
Poundland owner Pepco valued at $7bn in Warsaw listing.
Steinhoff priced shares in Poundland owner Pepco at $10.7 for its Warsaw stock market listing, valuing the discount retailer at c.$7bn, Reutersreported.
The price tag is towards the lower end of a $12.12 to $12.97 per share indicative price range, but at $12.4 the offer was more than five times subscribed.
The IPO is Poland’s biggest this year and gives a boost to Warsaw’s stock market which has had an uptick in listings, but was passed over by parcel delivery company InPost, which opted to list in Amsterdam in January.
Marex looks to list on LSE.
One of the brokers with rights to trade on the historic trading floor London Metal Exchange is heading for an IPO as commodity markets enjoy the biggest boom since the early 2000s, FTreported.
Marex, a brokerage controlled by two former Lehman Brothers investment bankers, said on Friday it was considering listing on the main market of the London Stock Exchange.
Should it proceed, Marex said the offer would consist of a sale of shares by existing investors and that it was aiming for a free float of at least 25%, meaning it would be eligible for inclusion in widely followed FTSE indices.
Asterion Industrial Partners’ fund II reaches $1.1bn first close. (FS)
Asterion Industrial Partners, an independent investment management firm focused on European infrastructure in the mid-market, has reached the first close of its second fund with a total of around $1.1bn of commitments.
Set up by three former KKR executives in 2018, the Madrid-based firm focuses on mid-market infrastructure investments in Western Europe. It targets the telecoms, energy, utilities and mobility sectors within its core focus markets of the UK, France, Spain, Portugal and Italy.
Reckitt shortlists bidders for $2bn Mead Johnson China business.
British consumer goods company Reckitt has shortlisted bidders including Bain Capital, The Carlyle Group and dairy producer Yili to submit binding offers for its Greater China infant formula business.
The group has hired Morgan Stanley to run an auction of infant formula unit Mead Johnson Nutrition China in Greater China, in a deal that could fetch over $2bn. Also on the shortlist are Sequoia Capital China teaming up with its portfolio company Shijiazhuang Junlebao Dairy, and private equity firm KKR, The Carlyle Group is bidding jointly with CITIC Capital.
Masan Group in talks to raise $1bn for animal feed unit.
Masan Group, a Vietnamese conglomerate, is exploring options for its animal feed unit that could include selling a stake to a strategic partner.
The company is working with advisers to weigh introducing fresh investment in the business, which is currently held under its listed Masan MeatLife. It is seeking to raise as much as $1bn.
Masan Group had earlier told local media it was planning an initial public offering for Masan MEATLife in 2022-23. The company also said it hoped to obtain a 10% share of the local $10.2bn meat market and earn $2bn in revenue by 2022.
Singtel may sell TrustWave MSSP and cybersecurity business.
Singapore Telecommunications may sell Trustwave, a Top 250 MSSP, as part of a strategic review of Trustwave and sister company Amobee, an independent advertising platform.
“Both businesses have come under increasing pressure in the last two years due to industry and operational challenges. The Covid-19 pandemic has also impacted performance, with enterprises and advertisers tightening their belts as economies went into lockdown. Amobee saw an almost year-long contraction in advertising spend by some of the largest agencies and advertisers in North America. Against this backdrop, there is a clear need to review these major investments to identify ways to increase the probability of successful execution,” Yuen Kuan Moon, Signtel Group CEO.
SoftBank to expand Vision Fund portfolio to 500 companies. (FS)
SoftBank Group Chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son told that his Japanese tech conglomerate wants to more than double its Vision Fund portfolio to 500 companies, bringing dozens to public markets every year, Nikkeireported.
The ambition comes despite big gyrations in the values of SoftBank's tech portfolio and shows that Son - who said his investments took courage - is intensifying his group's focus on using its multibillion-dollar Vision Funds to pick new tech winners. Since launching the Vision Fund four years ago, SoftBank has invested more than $90bn in nearly 200 companies.
Dentsu launches Economic Empowerment to boost diversity in Media.
Dentsu, a Japanese international advertising and public relations joint stock company, is launching Economic Empowerment, a stand-alone division aimed at boosting diversity in the media industry by helping minority-owned companies grow and connecting them to ad buyers looking to direct more dollars to such firms.
Economic Empowerment, will be led by the recently hired veteran ad buyer Mark Prince, who will consult with the media businesses about how they can grow their operations and generate more ad revenue from marketers, many of which are looking to reach ethnically diverse audiences,WSJreported.
Go Airlines seeks regulator approval for $490m India IPO.
Go Airlines India, a no-frills carrier controlled by the Wadia Group, has sought approval from India’s markets regulator to raise as much as $490m through an IPO, Bloombergreported.
The company may consider a pre-IPO share issue of as much as c.$204m. The IPO size will be cut if the pre-IPO placement happens. Go Airlines, the second biggest customer for Airbus, is planning to use the proceeds for repayment of debt, and dues to Indian Oil. ICICI Securities, Citi and Morgan Stanley will manage the IPO. GoAir has rebranded itself as Go First.
Penna Cement Industries seeks to raise $212m via IPO.
Penna Cement Industries filed a draft red herring prospectus with Securities and Exchange Board of India to raise nearly $212m through an initial public offering.
The IPO comprises a fresh issue of $178m and an offer for sale of up to $34m by its promoter PR Cement Holdings Ltd. Currently, PR Cement Holdings hold 33.41% stake in the company.
Edelweiss Financial Services, Axis Capital, ICICI Securities, JM Financial and Yes Securities are the lead managers to the issue.
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