Paper and pulp companies Paper Excellence and Domtar jointly announced that they have received Canadian Competition Act approval for their $3bn business combination.
The consent agreement filed by the Canadian Commissioner of Competition with the Competition Tribunal fulfills the final condition to the closing of the merger. The consent agreement requires that, following the closing of the merger, Domtar’s pulp mill in Kamloops, British Columbia be sold to resolve the Commissioner’s concerns about the Merger’s implications on the purchase of wood fibre from the Thompson/Okanagan region in British Columbia. The transaction remains on course to close in the fourth quarter of this year.
Domtar is advised by Morgan Stanley, Debevoise & Plimpton, Osler Hoskin & Harcourt and Joele Frank. Morgan Stanley is advised by Sullivan & Cromwell. Paper Excellence is advised by Barclays, Latham & Watkins, McMillan, Mehigan, Miller Titerle + and Kekst CNC.
GHO Capital, an investor in global healthcare, agreed to acquire Genesis Research, a provider of tech-enabled Real-World Evidence and Health Economics and Outcomes Research services. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are extremely excited by this partnership and the opportunity to pursue our strategic priorities as well as scale our holistic, cross-functional engagement. GHO is a strong partner with healthcare expertise to accelerate our growth and expand our global footprint, which will in turn strengthen the capabilities across the sector leading to better healthcare outcomes. We’d also like to thank our first equity partner, Rallyday, for supporting our inspired vision,” Frank A. Corvino, Genesis Research CEO.
Genesis is advised by Piper Sandler, Berg Hill Greenleaf Ruscitti, A. Lavin Communications and RSM International. GHO Capital is advised by CIL Management Consultants, CRS Insurance, Alvarez & Marsal, Ropes & Gray, Instinctif Partners and Deloitte.
Investors Bancorp, announced that stockholders of the company approved the planned $3.5bn acquisition by Citizens Financial Group, at a special meeting of the company's stockholders held earlier today. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2022, subject to the receipt of required regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.
"We are very pleased to have received overwhelming stockholder support for the planned merger with Citizens. Our customers, colleagues, communities and stockholders will benefit from Citizens' scale, capabilities and commitment to excellence," Kevin Cummings, Investors Bancorp Chairman and CEO.
Investors Bancorp is advised by Keefe Bruyette & Woods, Lazard, Piper Sandler and Luse Gorman. Citizens Financial Group is advised by Morgan Stanley and Sullivan & Cromwell. Morgan Stanley is advised by Debevoise & Plimpton.
AEA Investors, a private equity firm, completed the acquisition of Hero Digital, a customer experience-led digital transformation company, from CI Capital, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"CI Capital is proud to have collaborated with Dave Kilimnik and the Hero team during the company's extraordinary growth and transformation over the past five years. The Hero team has done an incredible job at rapidly scaling the company while maintaining an unwavering commitment to its clients and its employees. We look forward to watching what Dave and his team will accomplish in this next phase," Joost Thesseling, CI Capital Managing Director.
Hero Digital was advised by Canaccord Genuity, Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison and Joele Frank. AEA Investors was advised by Guggenheim Partners,
Houlihan Lokey and Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson. CI Capital was advised by Kekst CNC.
Bain Capital Private Equity, an equity investment manager, agreed to acquire a majority stake in InnovaCare Health, an integrated and value-based healthcare services provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Rick and his talented team have done an impressive job building InnovaCare into a leader at the forefront of improving healthcare delivery and have a proven track record of coordinating care and positively impacting the lives of patients, physicians and communities through innovative, value-based care,” Chris Gordon, Bain Capital Private Equity Managing Director.
InnovaCare is advised by JP Morgan, Kirkland & Ellis and PwC. Bain Capital is advised by Ropes & Gray, KPMG, Benefit Street Partners and Stanton PRM.
Echo Global Logistics, a provider of technology-enabled transportation and supply chain management services, announced that its stockholders approved the proposed $1.3bn acquisition by The Jordan Company, a private equity firm.
"I'm thrilled to partner with TJC as they bring significant expertise and industry experience to enable Echo to further accelerate our success in the market. In addition, having an experienced financial partner, with resources to fund continued growth, will result in a more rapid expansion of Echo's supply chain capabilities, including all of the automation planned to enable both our people and our digital freight marketplace," Doug Waggoner, Echo CEO.
Echo Global is advised by Morgan Stanley and Winston & Strawn. The Jordan Company is advised by Citigroup and Kirkland & Ellis. Debt financing is provided by Citigroup and Credit Suisse.
Hearthside Food, a manufacturer and producer of pastries and small foods, agreed to acquire Weston Foods ambient bakery business, a pastry manufacturer of George Weston Foods, for $293m.
"With the agreement to sell the ambient segment to Hearthside and our previously announced sale of the fresh and frozen businesses, we have two high-quality buyers that are well-positioned to carry on the proud legacy of the Weston Foods business. With the sale of the entire bakery business, George Weston will be focused on its market-leading Retail and Real Estate businesses going forward," Galen G. Weston, George Weston Chairman and CEO.
Hearthside is advised by Ropes & Gray and Stikeman Elliott. George Weston is advised by CIBC World Markets, Houlihan Lokey, Mayer Brown and Torys.
The California Public Utilities Commission approved Verizon Communications' $6.9bn proposed acquisition of TracFone Wireless after the companies agreed to some additional consumer protection conditions, Reuters reported.
The deal was previously approved by the Justice Department and is awaiting approval by the Federal Communications Commission, which has been reviewing the deal.
Verizon is advised by Credit Suisse, Debevoise & Plimpton, Jones Day and Von Wobeser y Sierra. America Movil is advised by Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton.
CJ ENM, a Korean entertainment company, agreed to acquire an 80% stake in Endeavor Content, a content studio, from Endeavor Group Holdings, a global sports and entertainment company, for $775m.
"We are thrilled for this next chapter as we seek to unlock even greater value for talent and our producer partners. With the addition of CJ ENM, our mission to empower creators and foster an inclusive environment that promotes diverse content on a global scale only grows stronger," Graham Taylor and Chris Rice, Endeavor Content co-CEOs.
Endeavor Content is advised by The Raine Group, Latham & Watkins and Brunswick Group. CJ ENM is advised by JP Morgan and O'Melveny & Myers.
Pacira BioSciences, a pharmaceutical company, completed the acquisition of Flexion Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company, for $630m including debt.
“This combination with Pacira offers Flexion stakeholders excellent prospects for value creation, particularly as the contingent value rights provide the opportunity to continue to benefit from the ongoing success of Flexion’s products and programs. I’d like to thank all of our employees - past and present - for their extraordinary commitment and superb contributions that have translated into ZILRETTA, a medicine that matters, getting to increasing numbers of patients in need and to a pipeline of potentially transformative medicines,” Michael Clayman, Flexion Co-Founder and CEO.
Flexion Therapeutics was advised by Goldman Sachs, Lazard and Cooley. Pacira Biosciences was advised by JP Morgan and Perkins Coie.
Oak View Group, a venue development company, completed the acquisition of Spectra, a venue management and hospitality provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"This merger brings together two dynamic leaders in the live events industry with complementary capabilities that will deliver a broad array of services to our clients. OVG's core competencies in arena development and corporate sponsorships, coupled with Spectra's leadership in food and beverage services will create a full-service live events company that will deliver a compelling and highly competitive set of offerings that meet our clients' evolving needs. I look forward to collaborating with the talented team at Spectra and bringing together our two organizations to create something truly unique," Tim Leiweke, OVG CEO.
Spectra was advised by Moelis & Co, Davis Polk & Wardwell and Sard Verbinnen & Co. Oak View Group was advised by UBS and Kirkland & Ellis.
HPS Investment Partners, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire a minority stake in Madison Dearborn Partners-backed Ankura Consulting Group, a management consulting firm, in a $1.5bn deal.
"This new investment from HPS, alongside the continued commitment and support from MDP, demonstrates the strength and performance of our business and the abundance of opportunity and runway ahead of us. While our growth story, to date, is remarkable, we believe we are now positioned to accelerate our growth, creating even greater opportunities for our colleagues, and broadening the scope and end-to-end execution of services and solutions we provide to our clients around the world," Kevin Lavin, Ankura CEO.
Ankura is advised by Jefferies & Company, William Blair & Co and Davis Polk & Wardwell. HPS Investment is advised by Latham & Watkins.
Cressey & Company, a private investment firm, led an investment in Trella Health, a source of healthcare growth insights and performance analytics data. Financial terms were not disclosed. Addition investor include Panoramic Ventures, a venture capital firm.
“It’s really exciting for us to attract and partner with one of the leading healthcare investors in the country. And it’s a true testament to the significant impact we’re making in the healthcare industry and for the customers we serve. This is a huge milestone in the accelerated growth of our business. It will enable us to further invest in our innovative products, strategic acquisitions, data capabilities and our amazing team that allows us to bring actionable insights to more healthcare organizations,” J. Scott Tapp, Trella President and CEO.
Trella was advised by Brentwood Capital Markets, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough and Trevelino/Keller. Cressey was advised by Ropes & Gray.
GB Group, a digital location, identity, and identity fraud software manufacturer, agreed to acquire Acuant, an identity verification and KYC/AML compliance provider, for $736m.
"This is an exciting day for Acuant. We are very proud of everything that Acuant has achieved to date – building a world-class technology portfolio and a strong market position across multiple sectors. There is still significant opportunity ahead and joining the GBG family is the best way for us to capitalise on those opportunities. Our customer, technology and geographical mix are complementary and culturally we are aligned in our mission, vision, and how we invest in our people and look after our customers. We are very much looking forward to working together in the years ahead," Yossi Zekri, Acuant CEO.
GB Group is advised by Jefferies & Company, Peel Hunt and Tulchan Communications.
Workday, a provider of enterprise cloud applications, agreed to acquire VNDLY, a cloud-based platform, for $510m.
“As organizations expand the definition of their workforce to meet growing business and talent demands, they need solutions that provide a holistic view of all worker types -- including contingent workers -- so they can better plan for and meet the great opportunity in front of them. VNDLY is at the forefront of the vendor management industry with an innovative and intuitive approach. The powerful combination of our technologies and talent will help customers better manage their evolving workforce dynamics, helping them keep pace with today’s changing world of work,” Pete Schlampp, Workday Chief Strategy Officer.
Workday is advised by Bank of America and Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe. VNDLY is advised by Taft Stettinius & Hollister.
PSG and Silversmith, two private equity firms, led a $425m investment in Formstack, a workplace productivity platform.
"We've spent the past 15 years helping organizations accelerate work and unlock more of their workforces with no-code productivity solutions, but never has the need for our platform been more apparent. Customers across nearly all industries are using Formstack to build for their immediate needs—digitizing and automating business processes—and also scaling with Formstack to help meet their larger, multi-year digital transformation needs. The momentum we're seeing continues to validate our belief that the key to digital transformation success is all about empowering non-technical employees with no-code workflow automation solutions," Chris Byers, Formstack CEO.
PSG was advised by Aeris Partners and Weil Gotshal an Manges. Silversmith was advised by Kirkland & Ellis.
Cast & Crew, a provider of mission-critical software and technology-driven services, agreed to acquire TEAM, a payroll and production management solutions company, from TorQuest, a private equity fund. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The TEAM Companies and Cast & Crew make an incredible combination. We each provide solutions to many of the advertising and entertainment industries' most critical challenges and do so in complementary ways for diversified segments of entertainment production. Their strength in the advertising, live events, and music industries has been the result of unwavering commitment to serving and innovating for their customers. By joining forces, we are bringing together the talent, technology, and expertise that will benefit each of our respective customers and enable the next generation of solutions for the next chapters of growth and transformation in our industry," John Berkley, Cast & Crew CEO.
Cast & Crew is advised by Latham & Watkins. TEAM is advised by Houlihan Lokey and Torys.
Reliance Worldwide, an Australian-owned publicly listed company which designs, manufactures and supplies water flow and control products and solutions, completed the acquisition of EZ-FLO International, a manufacturer and distributor of plumbing supplies, for $325m.
"The EZ-FLO Eastman legacy is one of growth through entrepreneurship, quality, relentless customer service, and brands our customers trust. In joining RWC, we're aligning with a likeminded partner to further accelerate growth and expand our capabilities to benefit our customers and the trade as a whole throughout North America and Latin America," Paul Wilson, EZ-FLO President.
EZ-FLO was advised by Bank of America. Reliance Worldwide was advised by GRACosway.
AAON, a manufacturer of HVAC products, agreed to acquire BasX Solutions, a manufacturer of data center cooling solutions, cleanroom systems, custom HVAC systems and modular solutions, for $200m.
“Upon closing this acquisition, we will continue to advance our long-term strategy of focusing on innovative, semi-custom and custom, energy efficient HVAC solutions for nonresidential applications. BasX will provide AAON with an immediate presence in the high-growth data center and cleanroom markets, both of which the Company has historically had minimal exposure. The growth and profitability fundamentals of these new markets are very compelling for AAON," Gary Fields, AAON President and CEO.
AAON is advised by JP Morgan and Wells Fargo Securities.
New Mountain Capital, a private equity firm, completed the acquisition of a majority stake in Cumming Group, a construction management firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We look forward to partnering with Cumming as the Company continues its history of delivering differentiated, best-in-class project and cost management solutions to its clients. Led by a world-class team that brings decades of industry expertise, we see many avenues for growth ahead, and look forward to building upon the team’s impressive current trajectory with additional investment in organic and acquisition initiatives," Harris Kealey, New Mountain Capital Managing Director.
New Mountain Capital was advised by Abernathy MacGregor Group. Cumming Group was advised by Jefferies & Company.
TriArtisan, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire the remaining stake in EnergySolutions, a processor of low level waste, from ECP, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are very pleased to increase our investment in EnergySolutions in support of Ken and his management team. Our incremental investment is intended to provide the Company long term stability of ownership and reflects our belief that EnergySolutions is uniquely positioned to take advantage of the rapidly growing nuclear utility, commercial and government waste management and decommissioning markets,” Gerald Cromack, TriArtisan Co-Founding Partner.
TriArtisan is advised by Ropes & Gray. EnergySolutionsis advised byLatham & Watkins.
US Senator Elizabeth Warren urged Securities and Exchange Commission chairman Gary Gensler to investigate a planned merger between former US President Donald Trump's social media company and Gigital World Acquisition, a blank-check firm for potential violations of securities laws, Reuters reported.
"The reports about DWAC and Trump Media and Technology Group appear to be a textbook example of a SPAC misleading shareholders and the public about materially important information," Elizabeth Warren.
Treasury Americas, a winemaker, completed the acquisition of Frank Family Vineyards, a Vintners, for $315m.
“The acquisition of Frank Family Vineyards represents an outstanding addition to the Treasury Americas brand portfolio and is another important step towards our ambition of becoming the premium wine market leader in the Americas," Ben Dollard, Treasury Americas President.
Frank Family Vineyards was advised by Houlihan Lokey.
Dragoneer, an investment firm, and General Atlantic, a private equity firm, led a $150m investment in Arco Platform a technology company in the education sector.
“We are excited to have Dragoneer and General Atlantic as investors and valuable future partners to our company. We see clear value creation arising from these partnerships, as we will benefit from their global investment experience in high-growth companies, while taking advantage of a better funding profile to support our growth strategy,” Ari de Sá Neto, Arco CEO and Founder.
General Atlantic, Coatue and Moore Strategic Ventures, three private equity firms, led a $1.4bn Series A funding round in Sierra Space, a commercial space company. Additional investors include BlackRock and AE Industrial Partners.
“We are building the next generation of space transportation systems and in-space infrastructures and destinations that will enable humanity to build and sustain thriving civilizations beyond Earth. Equally as important, Sierra Space is building the next platform for business. Space provides a unique environment that will enable new breakthroughs in critical areas such as pharmaceuticals, semiconductors, fiber optics and energy that will directly enhance our life on Earth,” Tom Vice, Sierra Space CEO.
Sisecam, a glass manufacturer, agreed to acquire a 60% stake in Ciner Resources, a natural soda ash producer, from Ciner Group, holding company for Ciner Resources, for $450m.
“With the extra capacity … we are expected to be one of the most powerful players in the natural sodium carbonate field, which we believe will be one of the sectors of the future,” Ahmet Kirman, Sisecam President.
Envoy Solutions, a diversified distribution company, agreed to acquire Johnston Paper, a manufacturer of paper products. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"I'm grateful Johnston will be joining Envoy Solutions on our journey to build a national platform. I'm looking forward to working with Mike May, Tom Lewis, and the great team they have put together. As we strategically target the Northeast region, we look forward to providing an unmatched level of service and support to thousands of customers in one of the most populated regions of the country. As we expand our geographic reach across the US, we'll continue to leverage the winning capabilities that brought us together," Mark M. Fisher, Envoy Solutions CEO.
Bain Capital and Hellman & Friedman near a $17bn Athenahealth buyout. (FS)
Private-equity firms Bain Capital and Hellman & Friedman are close to a deal to acquire healthcare technology company Athenahealth for about $17bn including debt.
The deal for Athenahealth, which provides cloud-based software to healthcare organizations, could be finalized in the coming days.
The private equity firm Veritas Capital and the hedge fund Elliott Management took Athenahealth private four years ago, months after former chief executive Jonathan Bush resigned in the aftermath of revelations about his personal life.
Prime Blockchain is in talks to merge with 10X SPAC in a $1.5bn deal.
Prime Blockchain, a Bitcoin mining and infrastructure firm, is in talks to merge with special purpose acquisition company 10X Capital Venture Acquisition II.
The SPAC is seeking to raise at least $150m through a so-called private investment in public equity, or PIPE, to support the transaction, which is set to take Prime Blockchain public and value the combined entity at roughly $1.5bn. Terms aren’t finalized and could still change, and it’s possible that talks fall apart.
Cinven might invest in Nitel at a $700m valuation. (FS)
Private-equity firm Cinven has agreed to make a significant investment in technology services provider Nitel, Bloomberg reported.
While terms of the transaction weren’t disclosed, the deal values the company at about $700m. A representative for Cinven declined to comment on the valuation.
Sun Life targets Asia for M&A.
Sun Life Financial, after shelling out almost $4bn in the past two years to build up its US and asset-management businesses, is now poised to focus its dealmaking on Asia.
Chief Executive Officer Kevin Strain, who took the reins in August, said that Asia’s growing middle class and the company’s goals for increasing earnings in the region by 15% a year make it a more likely target for acquisitions in the years ahead. The comments come about two weeks after the Toronto-based life insurer and asset manager unveiled a four-point strategy that enshrines dealmaking as a key pillar of its plans, Bloomberg reported.
"There’s probably slightly more opportunities in Asia from an M&A standpoint than there are in the other markets. o I would say that Asia is definitely a focus, but I wouldn’t say that it would be at the detriment of the other pillars." Kevin Strain, Sun Life CEO.
Lone Star weighs offer for SPX Flow. (FS)
Lone Star Funds, a private equity firm, is considering a bid for industrial pump and valve maker SPX Flow.
The Dallas-based firm is preparing to submit a bid this month for SPX Flow. Other bidders could emerge, they added. SPX Flow is currently running a strategic review of the company, working with Morgan Stanley, after rejecting in July a $3.59bn takeover bid by Ingersoll Rand.
Yunhong International announces plans to dissolve.
Special-purpose acquisition company Yunhong International said in a regulatory filing on Friday it plans to liquidate the company.
The blank-check company, run by former investment banker Patrick Orlando, said it intends to dissolve and liquidate and will redeem all of its outstanding shares at $10.31 per share. The company cited its inability to consummate an initial business within the deadline stipulated as per the company’s regulations, Reuters reported.
Palihapitiya sells down his SoFi's position.
Chamath Palihapitiya, Founder and CEO of Social Capital, has sold down around 15% of his position in US online lending company SoFi Technologies, Reutersreported.
The sale was to build up cash reserves and fund recent investments in companies such as battery materials firm Mitra Chem, fintech startup Spectral Finance and blockchain infrastructure company Syndica.
Casa Mazatlan to break Mexico's IPO drought in February.
Tenedora de Acciones, which operates stores under the name Casa Mazatlan, a Mexican pawn shop operator, said it plans to carry out the first initial public offering in the Latin American nation for 16 months.
Casa Mazatlan, will offer ordinary shares in February. It didn’t say how much it expects to raise.
Punto Casa de Bolsa and Intercam are bookrunners.
Primer Sazze closes $127m second fund. (FS)
Primer Sazze Partners, a San Jose-based venture capital firm, raised $127m for its second fund to invest in startups founded by Korean entrepreneurs in Asia and North America.
The second fund will invest in early-stage startups, from pre-seed to Series A. Initial ticket size will range between $500k and $3m and follow-up checks.
Wejo, a connected vehicle data company, went public via a SPAC merger with Virtuoso Acquisition, a special purposes acquisition company, in an $800m deal, including debt. The deal included a $230m cash contribution from Virtuoso and a $100m fully committed PIPE from Palantir Technologies, a software company, and General Motors.
"This is a monumental day for Wejo and the passionate members of our team who have remained steadfastly committed to our mission of utilizing data for good by solving critical mobility challenges. The closing of our merger with Virtuoso and public market listing provides us with the platform to continue to grow our relationships with OEMs and Tier 1 partners and customers, while expanding into new marketplaces, including fleet management services, end-to-end insurance, remote diagnostics, roadside assistance, car sharing, and payments," Richard Barlow, Wejo CEO.
Wejo is advised by Citigroup, Weil Gotshal and Manges, Arbor Advisory Group, Brunswick Group and Gasthalter & Co. Virtuoso Acquisition is advised by BTIG, Cohen & Company, Moelis & Co, The Growth Stage and Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer.
Mutares, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire Sealynx International, a manufacturer and supplier of high-quality car static and dynamic sealings, from GMD Group. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are very happy to make this important step towards the acquisition of Sealynx International and start creating significant growth and cost synergies with our SFC Solutions Group to become a significant player in the European sealing business," Johannes Laumann, Mutares CIO.
Mutares is advised by CLAI and Crossalliance. GMD Group is advised by Rothschild & Co.
Revalize, a provider of sector-specific revenue operations software, completed the acquisition of SpecPage. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Europe now accounts for nearly half of our business worldwide. Our multinational customers in the U.S. have been asking us to support their plans with an operational footprint in EMEA; and similarly, the customers of our European businesses need product and service coverage in North America. The addition of these five brands to the Revalize portfolio is a great win for all of our customers and any manufacturer worldwide that wants to build their digital capabilities across the design-to-cash cycle,” Jim Contardi, Revalize CEO.
Aquinos, a producer of furniture upholstery and mattresses, agreed to acquire Recticel's Bedding business line, for $138m.
"We believe that the Aquinos Group will be an excellent home for our Bedding business. It is a truly dedicated player in the European bedding and furniture markets with strong commercial and industrial capabilities to leverage the potential of our Bedding brands, technologies, locations and teams. It offers high complementarity in terms of product offering and geographical presence, with very little overlap in footprint, which will lead to significant opportunities for the business and for our Bedding employees," Recticel.
Cortec Group-backed Enthusiast Auto Holdings, an automobile e-commerce platform, completed the acquisition of EVANNEX, a retailer of Tesla accessories and after-market parts. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"EVANNEX has an outstanding reputation within the EV community, and their knowledge of Tesla accessories and the emerging EV market is unparalleled. EAH will bring expertise in digital marketing, operations, research & development, and technology to support the vision of EVANNEX's team as they continue to grow their business," Imran Jooma, EAH CEO.
KKR offered to acquire Telecom Italia, a telecommunication company, in a $37bn deal. KKR offered $0.56 a share in cash - a 45% premium that would give the company an equity value of $12bn. It has roughly $25.4bn of net debt.
Telecom Italia said the KKR offer was intended to be friendly, in that it would have to be approved by the company’s board members, and was conditional on a four-week period of due diligence and the approval of the Italian government, which has veto power over a takeover of the group.
MONETA Money Bank, a retail and expanding small and medium enterprises bank, agreed to acquire Air Bank Group, a retail bank, from PPF Group, an investment group, for 1.16bn.
The agreement between the parties is subject to shareholder approval at a General Meeting on 20 December 2021. Both the issuance of new shares as well as the acquisition of the Air Bank Group by MONETA will be subject to the requisite regulatory approvals, particularly from the Czech National Bank, the National Bank of Slovakia, and relevant antitrust authorities.
Porsche, an automobile manufacturer, agreed to acquire Greyp Bikes, an e-bike manufacturer. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Porsche is a pioneer of sustainable mobility and is consistently driving forward its e-mobility strategy. Our activities in the e-bike sector underline our consistent approach. Porsche has been a leading provider of plug-in hybrids for years, in 2019 we launched the first all-electric Porsche – the Taycan – and last year, one in three of the vehicles we delivered was fitted with an electric motor. Our ambitious goal is to have a CO2-neutral balance sheet across the entire value chain by 2030,” Lutz Meschke, Porsche Deputy Chairman.
EQT and Struengmann family consider bid for Novartis arm Sandoz. (FS)
Investment group EQT and the Struengmann family, are considering a joint offer for Sandoz, the generics arm of Swiss drugmaker Novartis. A potential offer could value Sandoz at more than $21.6bn.
After years of revamping the business, Novartis in October raised the prospect of divesting Sandoz, as price pressures mount in the off-patent drug sector. It said it had begun a strategic review which would explore all options, ranging from retaining the business to separation, Reuters reported.
Sonic and Biogroup are among bidders for the $5bn Unilabs. (FS)
Australian medical lab company Sonic Healthcare and French rival Biogroup-LCD are among bidders for Unilabs, the diagnostics firm being sold by Apax Partners.
Private equity house TPG and Belgian investment firm Groupe Bruxelles Lambert have also submitted offers for the Swiss business. A sale could value Unilabs at about $5bn.
Brookfield Asset Management is considering teaming up with one of the bidders. Deliberations are ongoing, and Apax could decide to keep Unilabs if bids don’t meet its expectations, Bloomberg reported.
Entain approaches Olympic Entertainment with a $1bn takeover offer.
International sports betting and gambling company Entain has made a more than $1bn approach for Estonian gambling company Olympic Entertainment Group.
Entain made an indicative offer to Olympic in recent weeks and is initially seeking to buy the company's online business and Lithuania and Croatia operations, with an option to option to buy the remaining business in early 2023, Reuters reported.
Li Ka-shing-backed AVR is in talks to acquire AEB.
AVR, a Dutch waste processing company controlled by an arm of Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing’s group, has emerged as the preferred bidder for Amsterdam’s AEB.
The CK Infrastructure Holdings-backed firm is in advanced talks with AEB’s owner, Amsterdam’s municipal government, about a deal that could value AEB at more than $453m. AVR submitted the highest bid, ahead of other parties including financial investors, Bloomberg reported.
Tiger Brands eyes deal to invest in the nutrition business.
South Africa's largest food producer Tiger Brands is close to clinching a deal with a business closely aligned with its health and nutrition strategy, as the company also warned on price increases.
Tiger Brands, like many of its peers, is tapping into emerging consumer trends and is plugging holes in its portfolio by diversifying into health, nutrition and plant-based meat products.
The potential investment would be via its recently launched venture capital fund, which it said had received over 500 expressions of interest and is expected to provide inorganic growth opportunities over the medium and long term. It is in the final stages of making an offer for a business, while a further nine opportunities are being assessed, Reuters reported.
Paul Singer raises stake in Hella to more than 10%.
Paul Singer, who leads activist fund Elliott, has increased his stake in German automotive lighting group Hella.
Singer's stake, consisting of voting rights attached to shares and instruments, now stands at 10.75%.
Faurecia earlier this weeks said it is not planning at this stage to make a new offer for minority shareholders in Hella after Singer's involvement was first made public.
Gopher withdraws from a possible offer for Playtech. (FS)
Gopher Investments, a 4.97% stakeholder in Playtech, walked away from a potential three-way takeover battle for the British gambling software maker, saying it was committed to a separate deal to buy a portion of the business.
Euronext chief eyes Nordics and Euroclear for its next purchase.
Euronext already has $1.13bn in cash for acquisitions and is eyeing the Nordic region and settlement giant Euroclear to further bolster the stock market operator’s European footprint.
The company is also willing to seek additional resources from shareholders if a deal presents itself. Priorities in the near term, though, remain reducing debt and integrating the recently acquired Borsa Italiana.
“We continue to be super focused on exploring and analyzing any opportunity. Euronext was very successful in previous acquisitions in the Nordics and more deals there would be a natural development," Stephane Boujnah, Euronext CEO.
Enel emerges as frontrunner for Mooney in joint bid with Intesa.
Europe's biggest utility Enel has emerged as a frontrunner to take control of Italian payments firm Mooney as part of a joint bidding proposal with Intesa Sanpaolo, one of Mooney's existing investors.
Mooney, which provides payment services across a network of 50k betting shops across Italy, is controlled by CVC Capital Partners while Intesa owns 30% of the business.
The consortium of Enel and Intesa Sanpaolo is expected to trump competition from private equity funds. The company has also drawn interest from a series of U.S. buyout funds including Searchlight Capital but Enel's partnership with Intesa Sanpaolo is giving its bidding plan a competitive edge, Reuters reported.
Mondelez is considering a bid for AVI.
Mondelez International is weighing a bid for South African food and beverage company AVI, a deal that would help the US multinational extend its presence in Africa, Bloomberg reported.
Discussions are underway though there’s no certainty a deal will be reached. Mondelez, which owns Oreo biscuits and Cadbury’s chocolate, may not want to acquire the entire company.
Delta plans to invest in ITA.
Delta Air Lines is considering buying a stake in state-owned Italian carrier Italia Trasporto Aereo to boost its presence in the European market, Reuters reported.
No detail released at the moment while the American airline could not immediately be reached for a comment.
Saudi Stock Exchange seeks to raise up to $1bn in IPO.
Saudi Arabia is keeping the home fires burning for regional public offerings, readying what could be the biggest sale of shares by a stock-exchange operator since Euronext.
Saudi Tadawul Group Holding is seeking to raise as much as $1bn after setting the price range for an initial public offering at $25.32 to $28 per share, the company said. The Riyadh-based bourse, on which oil giant Saudi Aramco trades, plans to sell a 30% stake, or 36m shares, Bloomberg reported.
ADNOC weighs IPO of logistics and services unit next year.
State oil firm Abu Dhabi National Oil Company is weighing an initial public offering of its marine services, logistics and shipping arm next year.
ADNOC Logistics & Services has been selected for a potential float in Abu Dhabi in 2022. A deal could follow after testing investor appetite and market conditions.
It is also taking advantage of a rally on the Abu Dhabi equities index, which is up about 65% this year, the best-performing market in the Gulf region, Reuters reported.
Deutsche Bank names Alexander Wynaendts as next chairman. (People)
Deutsche Bank proposed Alexander Wynaendts as its next chairman of the supervisory board, tapping the former insurance executive to guide Germany’s largest lender as it emerges from a decade of crisis, Bloomberg reported.
The Frankfurt-based lender’s nominating committee recommended that Wynaendts succeed Paul Achleitner when his decade-long run ends in May. Wynaendts, 61, served as chief executive officer of Dutch insurer Aegon for 12 years before leaving in 2020.
Investment giant Blackstone Group made a $6.2bn approach for troubled Australian casino firm Crown Resorts, sweetening an earlier offer as its main rival bidder is beset by regulatory problems, Reuters reported.
Star Entertainment said the company had withdrawn its Crown proposal but "as we have said consistently since that time, The Star remains open to exploring potential value enhancing opportunities with Crown".
Crown is advised by UBS and Allens. Star is advised by Credit Suisse, Flagstaff Partners and King & Wood Mallesons. Blackstone is advised by Morgan Stanley and Clayton Utz. CPH is advised by Moelis & Co.
EQT Infrastructure, an investment fund, agreed to acquire Icon Group, a cancer care provider, from Goldman Sachs Asset Management, QIC and Pagoda, three private equity firms. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Icon Group is revolutionizing the way cancer care is delivered through an integrated model that enables access for all patients through the decentralization of care in major cities and bringing cancer care services to the patient in one location. This best practice cancer care model is well validated in Australia and South-East Asia, and EQT’s investment will enable this next phase of growth around the world. It’s an exciting time to be involved in Icon, and importantly for EQT to be a partner in bringing this model of care to all cancer patients,” Ken Wong, EQT Infrastructure Partner.
EQT is advised by Deloitte, Morgan Stanley, PwC and Herbert Smith Freehills.
Carlyle, a private equity, agreed to acquire A Twosome Place, a café chain operator, from Anchor, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“A Twosome Place has built a strong brand and positioning as a leader in South Korea’s premium café sector. We look forward to working with the CEO Young-Sang Yi and his experienced management team to further build upon the strong franchise network and capture the significant white space in the Korean market,” John Kim, Carlyle Managing Director.
Carlyle is advised by Finsbury Glover Hering and The SIGNATURE. Anchor Equity is advised by Citigroup.
India's Reliance Industries, an Indian multinational conglomerate company, decided with Saudi Aramco, a Saudi Arabian public petroleum and natural gas company, to reevaluate the oil giant's proposed roughly $15bn investment in Reliance's oil-to-chemicals business, Reuters reported.
"Due to evolving nature of Reliance's business portfolio, Reliance and Saudi Aramco have mutually determined that it would be beneficial for both parties to re-evaluate the proposed investment O2C business in light of the changed context," Reliance.
Saudi Aramco is advised by Citigroup.
Telenor and CP Group discuss a $7.5bn Thailand telecom merger deal.
Telecommunications company Telenor and business conglomerate Chareon Pokphand Group, are exploring a merger of their telecom units in Thailand that could form a new market leader in the Southeast Asian country.
A deal, if completed, would merge the telecom operations of Telenor's Total Access Communication and CP Group's True.
A deal, if approved by regulators, would give the combined entity a market share in Thailand of around 52%, surpassing current number one AIS which holds around 44% of the market, Reuters reported.
Route Mobile receives a $117m fund from global and domestic investors. (FS)
Global and domestic investor funds, including Steadview Capital Mauritius, PineBridge Global Fund and Kuber India Fund, have invested $116.8m through qualified institutional placement in Route Mobile, a messaging and voice application programming interface company, DealStreetAsia reported.
Route Mobile went public in September 2020 with bumper listing gains, following an $80.8m initial public offering that was subscribed 73.3 times.
Tata to merge AirAsia India with Air India Express.
Tata Sons plans to merge low-fare airline AirAsia India with Air India Express, the budget carrier of Air India. The development comes after the conglomerate successfully bought Air India from the government.
The move is aimed at achieving operational synergies and cutting operational costs. The decision to merge has been taken by the group as it owns an 84% stake in AirAsia India and paves the way for a quick merger.
FountainVest might buy F&B Group from EQT. (FS)
FountainVest Partners has agreed to purchase China F&B Group, which runs Papa John’s Pizza and Dairy Queen outlets in China, Bloomberg reported.
The Hong Kong-based private equity firm will take over the restaurant chain from current owner EQT, a Swedish buyout firm, and other holders for about $160m negotiations to conclude the deal are ongoing and there’s no certainty it will be closed.
SoftBank-backed SenseTime wins approval for a $1bn Hong Kong IPO.
SoftBank-backed SenseTime, an artificial intelligence firm, receives approval from the Hong Kong stock exchange for its initial public offering that could raise at least $1bn.
SenseTime plans to start gauging demand for its IPO as soon as this week. The precise terms of the offering haven’t been finalized.
CICC, Haitong and HSBC are joint sponsors for SenseTime’s IPO.
CJ Olive Young to raise $1bn in local IPO.
South Korean health and beauty chain CJ Olive Young said on Friday it was looking to raise around $1bn in an initial public offering, as the company seeks to tap a booming market for new listings.
The listing is set to take place early next year. CJ Olive Young has appointed Mirae Asset Securities and Morgan Stanley as the main underwriters on the transaction while KB Securities and Credit Suisse will act as co-underwriters.
Cimory prices $260m IPO near top end of range.
Cisarua Mountain Dairy, known as Cimory, an Indonesian dairy producer priced its initial public offering near the top end of a marketed range, raising about $260m in what’s set to be the nation’s biggest first-time share sale by a food company in more than a decade.
The Jakarta-based company is offering 1.19bn shares, or 15% of its enlarged capital, and had marketed them between $0.19 and $0.22 each. The proceeds will be used to expand production capacity, Bloomberg reported.
Leo Capital set to float third fund with a $125m target corpus. (FS)
Singapore headquartered early-stage venture firm Leo Capital is set to launch its third fund with a corpus of $125m to chase investment opportunities in India.
Over the past three years, Leo Capital has raised $106m for two funds seeking technology-centric opportunities in India and Southeast Asia. The fund has made 32 investments since 2018 and exited two. Moreover, twenty of the investments have gone on to raise further rounds, DealStreetAsia reported.
Orient Jiafu holds first close of Fund V at $110m. (FS)
Orient Jiafu Asset Management, an investment firm in China, has made the first close of its fifth fund at over $110m with a target to raise $157m in total.
Fund V attracted capital commitments from investors in Orient Jiafu’s previous four funds. Its key limited partners include government-guided industry funds in eastern China’s Yangtze River Delta, Chinese state-owned capital, funds of funds, and publicly listed companies, among others, DealStreetAsia reported.
China Huarong gets a takeover HKEX waiver over listing rules.
China Huarong Asset Management said it has been granted a temporary waiver from strict compliance with Hong Kong Stock Exchange listing rules regarding the size of its public float.
The company is mulling listing and circulating domestic shares that can be transferred into H shares later, to restore the public float to at least 25%, it said in a November 21 stock exchange statement.
The exchange waiver lowers the minimum public float from 25% as standard to 18.23% for a certain period, the statement said. The waiver will remain in effect until August 31, 2022, Bloomberg reported.
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