Canadian Pacific, a transportation services company, and Kansas City Southern, a transportation holding company, announced that they have received the required regulatory pre-transaction control approvals from the Mexican Federal Economic Competition Commission and the Mexican Federal Telecommunications Institute for the previously announced proposed combination.
“This important milestone marks the next step on our path to creating the first single-line rail network linking the US, Mexico and Canada. This historic combination will add capacity to the U.S. rail network, create new competitive transportation options, support North American economic growth, and deliver important benefits to customers, employees and the environment," Keith Creel, Canadian Pacific President and CEO.
Kansas City Southern is advised by Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, Baker & Miller, Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg, Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz, White & Case, WilmerHale, Willkie Farr & Gallagher, Joele Frank and MacKenzie Partners. Canadian Pacific Railway 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, Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson and Edelman. Canadian National Railway is advised by Centerview Partners, JP Morgan, RBC Capital Markets, Agon Partners, Cravath Swaine & Moore, Norton Rose Fulbright, Sidley Austin, Stikeman Elliott, Torys, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Brunswick Group and Longview Communications.
Blue Prism, a robotics software company, has agreed to a $1.63bn final takeover offer from Vista Equity Partners, a private equity firm, topping a proposal from SS&C Technologies.
The increased $1.7 per-share cash offer from Bali Bidco, a firm indirectly owned by Vista, comes amid objections from activist investor Coast Capital, which has supported SS&C’s proposal. Bali Bidco said it will fund the deal through existing cash resources, Reuters reported.
Blue Prism is advised by Bank of America, Investec, Qatalyst Partners, CMS, White & Case and Brunswick Group. Vista Equity Partners is advised by Goldman Sachs, Kirkland & Ellis, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Prosek Partners.
Kirkland Lake Gold, a gold mining, development, and exploration company, announced that at a special meeting of shareholders, the company’s shareholders voted in favour of the arrangement resolution approving the proposed merger of equals whereby all of the issued and outstanding shares of the Kirkland Lake will be acquired by Agnico Eagle.
“We are pleased that our shareholders have voted in favor of the merger of equals with Agnico Eagle. Through the merger, we will establish a new leader in the gold industry, with superior performance, significant financial strength, an extensive pipeline of development and exploration projects to support sustainable, low-risk growth and leadership in key areas of Environmental, Social and Governance. We look forward to completing the merger, following receipt of final regulatory approvals, and to moving ahead as the new Agnico Eagle. We believe this will be a company positioned to generate superior long-term returns for shareholders going forward,” Tony Makuch, Kirkland Lake Gold President and CEO.
Kirkland Lake is advised by BMO Capital Markets, CIBC World Markets, Maxit Capital, Cassels Brock & Blackwell and Fasken. Agnico Eagle is advised by Bank of America, TD Securities, Trinity Advisors Corporation and Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg.
Facebook has offered remedies in a bid to secure EU antitrust approval for its $1bn acquisition of US customer service startup Kustomer.
The EU competition enforcer, which did not provide details of the remedies in line with its policy, extended its decision deadline to January 28. It is expected to seek feedback from rivals and customers before deciding whether to accept the offer or demand more. The Commission has previously said the deal may hurt competition and reinforce the US social media company's power in online advertising.
Kustomer is advised by JP Morgan. Facebook is advised by Latham & Watkins and Brunswick Group.
Littlejohn, a private equity firm, completed the acquisition of American Health Staffing Group, a provider of healthcare talent and technology solutions. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Over the past decade, AHSG has become a leading player across the healthcare staffing market through industry foresight, strategic acquisitions and investing in its state-of-the-art scalable technology and services. We look forward to working closely with Mark and the entire AHSG team to continue to develop leading talent and technology solutions to drive efficiencies for AHSG’s customers in a dynamic and growing market," Drew Greenwood, Littlejohn Managing Director.
American Health was advised by Houlihan Lokey and Gasthalter & Co.
Aztiq, a healthcare investor, and Innobic, a life sciences company, to acquire Alvogen, a pharmaceutical company, for $475m.
"I am very proud to have witnessed the maturation of both Lotus and Adalvo. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the existing shareholders for their great support in the transformation of both Lotus and Adalvo, and at the same time to welcome our new partner Innobic as we look forward to carrying out the essential work of expanding access to medicines to more people who need them. With our vast collective expertise, and the comprehensive geographic networks and solid market intelligence in ASEAN brought by innobic and PTT, I believe that Lotus and Adalvo will have a compelling competitive advantage, enabling both enterprises to support one another and advance their global leadership in their sectors," Robert Wessman, Alvogen Chairman and CEO.
Controlling shareholders of Alliar, a Brazilian medical diagnostics company, have accepted a takeover proposal by MAM Asset Management, an investment fund linked to tycoon Nelson Tanure, Reuters reported.
Nelson Tanure announced in August he had acquired a 26% stake in Alliar, saying he believed medical diagnosis was a promising sector in Brazil and that his daughter, a physician, had other investments in the industry.
Grupo SURA says shareholders approve search for strategic partner.
Financial conglomerate Grupo SURA said shareholders had authorized its directors to seek a strategic partner to take a non-controlling stake in Colombia's largest holding company.
Grupo SURA, which is made up of insurer Suramericana and pension fund manager Sura Asset Manager, also owns 20% to 50% stakes in Bancolombia, investor Grupo Argos and processed food company Grupo Nutresa, Reuters reported.
"The board of directors of the company ... authorized the board to hire the required advisors - investment banking, legal advice, among others - so that the search process for possible strategic partners interested in having a non-controlling stake in Grupo SURA can continue," Grupo SURA.
Pershing Square SPARC files for New York listing.
Pershing Square SPARC Holdings, the special purpose acquisition rights company of billionaire investor Bill Ackman, filed for a public offering of its warrants in the United States.
The SPARC structure has been devised by Ackman and has never been tested on Wall Street before. The move comes months after the prolific dealmaker abandoned a deal for his $4bn blank-check company to buy a 10% stake in Universal Music Group, due to concerns from the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
The SPARC, an affiliate of Ackman's Pershing Square Tontine Holdings, will offer 244m subscription warrants. Each warrant will give the holder the right to purchase common stock at a minimum price of $10 per share. The listing will require the SEC to approve a proposal submitted by the New York Stock Exchange, to allow listing and trading of subscription warrants by acquisition vehicles, Reuters reported.
Vahanna Tech Edge Acquisition I announces closing of its $200m IPO.
Vahanna Tech Edge Acquisition I, a blank cheque company, announced that it has closed its initial public offering of 20m units, including 2m issued pursuant to the full exercise of the underwriters’ over-allotment option, at a price of $10.00 per unit.
The units are listed on the Nasdaq Global Market (“Nasdaq”) and began trading under the ticker symbol “VHNAU” on November 23, 2021. Each unit consists of one share of Class A ordinary share and one-half of one redeemable warrant, with each whole warrant exercisable to purchase one share of Class A ordinary shares at a price of $11.50 per share. After the securities comprising the units begin separate trading, the shares of Class A ordinary shares and warrants are expected to be listed on Nasdaq under the symbols “VHNA” and “VHNAW,” respectively.
French waste and water management group Veolia believes it will win EU antitrust approval for its tie-up with rival Suez on December 14 after the two companies offered additional asset sales to address competition concerns.
The new concessions, which were submitted to the EU this week, are limited in scope and do not undermine the logic of the merger between the two French rivals.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the European Commission said both companies had offered remedies in a bid to secure its approval, without giving details, and extended the deadline for its decision to December 14.
Suez is advised by Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, PJT Partners, Rothschild & Co, Societe Generale, Bredin Prat, Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier, Sullivan & Cromwell, Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz and Brunswick Group. Ardian is advised by Linklaters and Headland Consultancy. Veolia is advised by Bank of America, Citigroup, Credit Agricole, HSBC, Messier & 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.
Britain's regulator flagged competition concerns on a deal between Finnish firm Konecranes and cargo handling machinery maker Cargotec, saying it would lead to UK customers having fewer alternative suppliers.
The Competition and Markets Authority launched an investigation into the deal in July, its first in-depth probe done in parallel with a review by the European Union since Brexit. In its provisional findings, the CMA said it was concerned the deal could lead to lower service quality or higher prices for port terminals, Reuters reported.
Konecranes is advised by Access Partners, JP Morgan, Nordea Bank, Dittmar & Indrenius, Hannes Snellman, Krogerus, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and Kekst CNC. Financial advisors are advised by White & Case. Cargotec is advised by Advium Corporate Finance, Citigroup, Castren & Snellman, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Kekst CNC. Debt financing is provided by Nordea Bank.
Volkswagen is convinced that its €2.9bn euro ($3.3bn) offer for Europcar, made as part of a consortium, fairly reflects the firm's value, a senior executive said, pouring cold water on hopes for a higher bid, Reuters reported.
"With a takeover premium of 30-40%, depending on the reference point, we have presented a very attractive offer," Christian Dahlheim, Volkswagen Head of Group Sales.
Volkswagen is advised by BNP Paribas, Bank of America, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer. Europcar is advised by Guggenheim Partners, Rothschild & Co, Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier, Latham & Watkins, White & Case, Willkie Farr & Gallagher and Publicis Consultants.
EQT Infrastructure, an equity investment company in high quality mid-sized infrastructure companies, completed the acquisition of Solarpack, a Spanish renewable energy developer and owner of solar photovoltaic plants, for $1.07bn.
"There is tremendous potential for solar energy as the global need for sustainable and environmentally friendly energy solutions will accelerate over the coming years. Solarpack, a strong platform with high growth potential, marks an important milestone for us as it is EQT Infrastructure’s first investment in the European solar PV energy sector. Looking ahead, we see great opportunities for organic and acquisitive growth in both existing and new geographies, and EQT Infrastructure looks forward to scaling-up Solarpack with the ambition to deliver a positive – and green – impact to the societies the company operates in," Asís Echániz, EQT Partner.
Solarpack was advised by JP Morgan. EQT was advised by Ernst & Young, Credit Suisse and Clifford Chance. Beraunberri was advised by Citigroup and Cuatrecasas Goncalves Pereira.
Ardagh, a supplier of infinitely recyclable metal and glass packaging, agreed to acquire Consol Glass, a supplier of glass packaging, for $635m.
"We are very pleased to expand our European and North America presence in glass packaging into Africa with the acquisition of Consol, a high-quality business, led by an excellent management team. Consol is a market leader in the region, with great relationships across a diversified domestic and multinational customer base. Virtually all of Consol's multinational customers are also customers of Ardagh. We look forward to welcoming Consol to the Ardagh family and to investing in the long-term growth of the African market, driven by consumer trends and rising sustainability awareness," Paul Coulson, Ardagh Chairman.
Consol is advised by Barclays. Ardagh is advised by Citigroup.
VDK Group, a provider of technical installation and maintenance services, completed the acquisition of P. de Vries, a company specializing in timber tract operations. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Mathilde and I are very happy that we can take this step and we have full confidence in the VDK group,” Johan Meijer, P. de Vries General Manager.
P. de Vries was advised by Marktlink. VDK Group was advised by DLA Piper.
Private equity firms Atalaya Capital Management and Warwick Capital Partners, led a $147m Series B funding round in Allica Bank, a fintech SME bank.
“We are excited to continue our support of Allica and the bank’s transformational acquisition of AIB’s SME portfolio. Allica has been building impressive momentum since its full launch last year and this acquisition will build on and accelerate the development of Allica’s award-winning proposition for Britain’s underserved SMEs," Ian Burgess, Warwick Capital Managing Partner.
Roche shareholders voted overwhelmingly to support the $20.7bn deal to buy Novartis's nearly one third voting stake.
Roche held an extraordinary general meeting to settle matters related to its plan to disentangle the two pharma companies, both based in Basel, who had been linked by the investment for two decades, Reuters reported.
AddSecure, a provider of secure IoT connectivity solutions, completed the acquisition of LOSTnFOUND, a provider of location tracking. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"I look forward to welcoming LOSTnFOUND into the AddSecure Group. This acquisition delivers on our strategy of becoming the leading provider of fleet and transport management solutions in Europe and will add complementary telematics and tracking solutions to our business. We believe this acquisition will help us serve our customers in an even better way today and in the future,” Claes Odman, AddSecure President.
Snam, an energy infrastructure operator, agreed to acquire a $49.9% stake in TTPC and TMPC gas pipelines from Eni, an energy company, for $434m.
"This transaction allows us to free up new resources to be used on our energy transition path, while at the same time maintaining the management of a strategic infrastructure with Snam to ensure the security of natural gas supply to the country. Gas will play a key role in the transition of energy systems to zero-emission models, and it is important to maintain the availability and diversification of supply routes for this resource," Claudio Descalzi, Eni CEO.
Private equity giants KKR and CVC Capital Partners are considering teaming up on a bid for Telecom Italia, a move that would help share the financial burden for Europe’s biggest-ever leveraged buyout.
The two investment firms have held exploratory talks about the potential for a joint offer. CVC has already been studying a possible acquisition of Telecom Italia for several months. The considerations range from CVC being an equal partner to joining as a minority investor.
Advent International, which had been in talks about partnering with CVC, has cooled on the idea due to the complexity of the transaction and the Italian government’s perceived support for the KKR bid.
Apex Group and CSC Global are considering making rival takeover offers for the $2.1bn Dutch tax and administration specialist Intertrust.
The business solutions firms are in discussions about launching formal bids. Deliberations are ongoing and there’s no certainty either firm will decide to proceed with offers.
Intertrust said this week that it’d received multiple expressions of interest since announcing the CVC discussions. It said each of these parties had submitted conditional, non-binding proposals ranging up to $25 per share in price.
Issa Brothers mull a $35bn merger of Asda and EG Group.
Britain’s billionaire Issa brothers are considering merging UK grocer Asda Group with EG Group, their international chain of gas stations and convenience stores.
The Issas are studying a range of strategic alternatives for EG Group, which they own together with buyout firm TDR Capital. A merger with Asda could value the combined business at around $35bn including debt.
Asda and EG Group have been stepping up their cooperation in recent months, drawing up plans to expand foodservice at Asda locations. A deal would give EG Group greater bargaining power with suppliers and further scale to compete with companies like Alimentation Couche-Tard, Bloomberg reported.
Software explores sale of $3bn tech company.
Software is exploring strategic options, including a potential sale, in one of the busiest-ever years of dealmaking for Germany’s listed companies.
The Darmstadt, Germany-based software company is working with advisers to gauge interest from potential buyers, including private equity firms. Deliberations are in the early stages and there’s no certainty that it will decide to sell, Bloomberg reported.
Simens kicks off the sale of Postal Logistics business.
Siemens AG, Europe’s largest engineering company, has kicked off a sale of its postal logistics unit.
It is working with Goldman Sachs to gauge interest in the unit, which makes equipment to sort letters and parcels.
Siemens is pursuing the sale at a time when companies are increasing logistics spending to cope with the sudden surge in online shopping during the pandemic, Bloomberg reported.
. JP Morgan weighs a deal to acquire Viva Wallet.
JP Morgan is weighing a potential investment in Greek digital banking and payments firm Viva Wallet, as it seeks to bring more financial disruptors under its roof.
Viva Wallet is considering seeking a valuation of at least $1.7bn in any transaction. Viva Wallet has been working with an adviser to explore strategic options. There’s no certainty that JP Morgan will proceed with a deal, and other suitors could emerge, Bloomberg reported.
Snam receives takeover approaches for its gas storage business.
Snam’s natural-gas storage business is attracting interest from infrastructure investors.
The Italian company is considering its options after receiving approaches from potential buyers of a minority stake in the unit including Macquarie Group’s infrastructure arm. Deliberations are in the early stages and there’s no certainty they’ll result in offers, Bloomberg reported.
Butlin's set to be auctioned by Blackstone. (FS)
British resort chain Butlin's, which is owned by Blackstone, is expected to be put up for sale next year as many Britons opt for staycations as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Blackstone has picked investment bank Rothschild & Co to conduct an auction of the holiday camp group.
Industrie De Nora eyes 2022 IPO.
Industrie De Nora, an Italian maker of components for green hydrogen production, is planning to list shares on the Milan Stock Exchange next year.
“We are seriously evaluating an initial public offering in the near future. We are upbeat about 2022, but need to assess market evolution," Paolo Dellacha, Industrie De Nora CEO.
Nextalia raises $635m in first close of new private equity fund. (FS)
Italian asset management firm Nextalia has raised more than
$564m in the first close of its newly launched private equity fund focused on mid-market deals in the euro zone's third-largest economy.
Nextalia, led by former Mediobanca banker Francesco Canzonieri, said on Friday it had raised an overall $635m and aims to reach a hard cap of $905m in equity commitments in the first half of 2022.
Canzonieri said his business venture was leveraging on a network of "strong relationships across the business community" and "an industrial approach to long-term sustainable value creation." He added that the private equity industry is a key enabler to the growth and success of Italian enterprises.
A consortium of investors including Falcon Edge, DST Global, D1 Capital, Redbird Capital, Tiger Global, TPG and Footpath Ventures, led a $840m round in Dream Sports, a sports technology company.
“Our investors have deep experience in developing sports ecosystems globally, and we are fortunate to have their guidance to ‘Make Sports Better’ for 1bn Indian sports fans," Harsh Jain, Dream Sports CEO and Co-Founder.
Dream Sports was advised by Avendus. Footpath Ventures was advised by AZB & Partners.
NEO Energy, an energy company, agreed to acquire JX Nippon Exploration and Production, an oil exploration company, from Eneos Holdings, an energy company, for $1.6bn.
"This transaction is part of our ongoing global portfolio management strategy to strengthen our upstream portfolio by selling projects that are no longer critical to our business. In line with this strategy, we have decided to sell our UK business to NEO which is an emerging upstream company. This transaction is another step towards the Group's Long Term Vision as we continue to contribute to the development of a low carbon society," Hiroshi Hosoi, JX President and CEO.
Universal Robina, a consumer food and beverage product company, agreed to acquire Munchy Food, a snack food manufacturer, from CVC Capital, a private equity and investment advisory firm, for $453m.
"URC is delighted to announce the acquisition of Munchy's which will add immediate value to our international product portfolio, and scale up our Malaysian market position to leadership in the Biscuits category. Munchy's, with its strong brands, talented organization, and operational excellence, is a great strategic fit with URC. Together, we will be able to further expand the footprint of URC and Munchy's brands and unlock growth synergies in Malaysia as well as across the ASEAN region," Irwin Lee, Universal Robina President and CEO.
THE FUND, Seraphim Space and DNCA Invest led a $109m Series F round in Astroscale, an orbital debris removal company. Additional investors included Japan Growth Capital Investment, AXA Life Insurance, IE FAST AND EXCELLENT, Innovation Engine, EEI Fund 4, Opus, Y’s Investment, Solaris ESG Master Fund, Chiba Dojo Fund II, Prelude Structured Alternatives Master Fund and Yamauchi No.10.
“Since Astroscale’s inception in 2013, we have dedicated ourselves to solving the technological, economic and policy aspects of satellite servicing to build a sustainable infrastructure for a thriving space ecosystem. This latest round of funding will dramatically accelerate our ability to make on-orbit servicing routine by 2030. It also shows that investors around the world, acknowledge the tremendous potential in the emerging on-orbit servicing market, which will revolutionize the future of space," Nobu Okada, Astroscale Founder and CEO.
China Evergrande soccer stadium taken over by the government.
A government body has taken over China Evergrande Group's soccer stadium with a view to selling it, as the debt-laden property developer scrambles to meet liabilities.
Evergrande, which has been struggling to meet repayments on over $300bn in debt, is also considering selling money-losing Guangzhou Football Club.
Construction on the $1.8bn Guangzhou Evergrande Football Stadium began in April last year for completion by the end of 2022, when it was set to be the world's largest soccer venue by capacity. However, Evergrande has halted construction due to lack of capital and ceded control to authorities which plan to sell the stadium, or - in the absence of buyers - acquire it via state-owned Guangzhou City Construction Investment Group, Reuters reported.
Reliance may slice up oil-to-chemicals business to induct new investors.
As the first step of the new strategy, RIL decided to transfer the company’s gasification assets to a wholly-owned subsidiary. RIL’s oil-to-chemicals assets include its refining, chemicals, fuel retail, and bulk wholesale marketing businesses.
In a statement, RIL said restructuring its gasification assets would allow it to unlock the value of syngas with a collaborative and asset-light approach, involving the induction of investors in the gasifier subsidiary, DealStreetAsia reported.
Beijing Capital weighs the sale of Singapore waste recycling unit. (FS)
Beijing Capital Group is considering selling its waste management business in Singapore for as much as $500m.
The state-owned Chinese firm is in talks with advisers about working on the potential divestment of ECO Special Waste Management. Deliberations are at an early stage and Beijing Capital could decide against selling the business, Bloomberg reported.
Chinese regulators want Didi to delist from US on data security fears.
Chinese regulators have asked top executives of ride hailing giant Didi Global to devise a plan to delist from US bourses on data security fears.
China’s tech watchdog wants the management to take the company off the New York Stock Exchange on concerns about leakage of sensitive data, DealStreetAsia reported.
Proposals under consideration include a straight up privatization or a share float in Hong Kong followed by a delisting from the United States. If the privatization proceeds, shareholders would likely be offered at least the $14 per share IPO price, since a lower offer so soon after the June initial public offering could prompt lawsuits or shareholder resistance.
TCV in advanced talks to lead a $270m round in Razorpay. (FS)
Venture capital firm TCV is in advanced talks with Razorpay to lead a new $270m fundraising by the fintech unicorn.
The Series F round of funding is likely to more than double Razorpay’s valuation to around $6.5bn. Talks are also on with other marquee global investors. A portion of the funds would be used for inorganic growth opportunities.
NetEase’s Cloud Village raisesd $422m in HOng Kong IPO.
The music streaming arm of Chinese gaming giant NetEase raised $422m in its Hong Kong initial public offering, pricing the shares at the mid-point of a marketed range.
Cloud Village Inc. sold shares at $26.30 apiece. The company had marketed 16m shares for $24 to $28 apiece. The shares will start trading on December 2.
Cloud Village revived plans for an IPO after putting the listing on hold earlier this year, delaying it just days after the company began gauging investor demand. It had been pursuing an IPO of about $1bn, Bloomberg reported.
Jusda seeks to raise $400m in Pre-IPO financing.
Jusda, a logistics arm of Foxconn Technology Group, is considering raising funds from private investors ahead of a potential initial public offering as early as next year.
The supply chain management platform is seeking to raise $300m to $400m in a so-called pre-IPO round. The company, which has a valuation of as much as $4bn, would use the proceeds for expansion amid a boom in logistics services.
The company is also in the early stages of evaluating a potential listing in Hong Kong in the second half of next year. No final decision has been made as considerations are preliminary, and details such as the size of the fundraising could still change.
Creative Biosciences weighs Hong Kong IPO.
Creative Biosciences, a developer of DNA testing kits for colorectal cancer, is considering an initial public offering in Hong Kong as soon as next year.
Creative Biosciences is in discussions with potential advisers about a listing. The prospective IPO could raise about $200m.
Abogen seeks $300m in funding.
Suzhou Abogen Biosciences, a mRNA vaccine manufacturer, is raising about $300m in fresh capital.
The vaccine maker’s latest funding round is being led by SoftBank Vision Fund and joined by other investors including Mirae Asset Securities. An announcement is expected as soon as next week.
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