DLH Holdings, a provider of technology-enabled business process outsourcing and program management solutions, completed the acquisition of Grove Resource Solutions, a provider of broad array of cloud-based enterprise modernization and cyber security solutions, for $185m.
“We are thrilled to begin a new era at DLH with the acquisition of GRSi. Through this landmark transaction, we elevate our information technology and engineering capabilities while adding the scale we need to thrive in an increasingly competitive marketplace. GRSi’s high-end IT and technical capabilities serving scientists, researchers, and system engineers have earned the company a reputation for excellence, and we expect that our unified organization will build upon those achievements to drive accelerated growth for DLH in the near- and long-terms. GRSi’s highly credentialed workforce features some the best and brightest technology leaders in our industry. We could not be more excited to welcome the entire team into the DLH family," Zach Parker, DLH President and CEO.
DLH Holdings was advised by Baker Tilly, Wolf Den Associates, KippsDeSanto & Co, Becker & Poliakoff, Holland & Knight and Darrow Associates (led by Chris Witty). Debt financing was provided by Atlantic Union Bank, First National Bank and M&T Bank. GRSi was advised by Robert W Baird (led by Alex Sevilla, Jean Stack and John Song).
Macquarie-backed Aligned Data Centers, a technology infrastructure company offering innovative, sustainable, and adaptive scale data centers and build-to-scale solutions for global hyperscale and enterprise customers, agreed to acquire ODATA, a data center service provider that offers scalable, reliable, and flexible IT infrastructure, from Patria Investments, an asset management firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“The ODATA team and I are very excited to be joining Aligned Data Centers. The strategic merger of the ODATA and Aligned platforms will provide customers with a broader base of both available and expansion capacity in key locations across the Americas, as well as additional breadth of experience and depth of knowledge across an expanded team of infrastructure experts. We look forward to accelerating the growth of our platform with Aligned and setting a successful cultural course focused on customer and staff centricity, innovation, and operational excellence,” Ricardo Alário, ODATA CEO.
Aligned Data Centers is advised by Guggenheim Partners, JP Morgan, Vinson & Elkins (led by Gabriel Silva and Eamon Nolan) and 180 Marketing (led by Jennifer Handshew). Guggenheim Partners and JP Morgan are advised by Paul Hastings. SDC Capital Partners is advised by Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom (led by Thomas Greenberg). Patria Investments is advised by DH Capital, Evercore, Pinheiro Neto, Proskauer Rose and Hill + Knowlton.
Veritas Capital, a private equity fund, completed the acquisition of Sequa, a business managing jet engine repair and metal coating manufacturing from Carlyle, an investment company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Chromalloy has emerged as an industry leader by leveraging technology and innovation to drive a highly unique value proposition for customers. We are thrilled to partner with Brian and the entire Chromalloy team, who have a proven track record of delivering differentiated solutions to the global engine ecosystem. Together, we are excited to continue investing in distinctive technology and deepening Chromalloy’s relationships with both existing and new customers," Ramzi Musallam, Veritas Chief Executive Officer and Managing Partner.
ZyVersa Therapeutics, a company committed to improving patients' health outcomes and quality of life, went public via a SPAC merger with Larkspur Health Acquisition in a $109m deal.
"We are delighted to partner with Larkspur in this business combination. Their management and board have vast experience as investors and operating executives in the biopharmaceutical industry. This merger and entry into the public markets will enable us to escalate development of our pipeline drug candidates for targeted patients with renal and inflammatory diseases who have the need for disease-modifying drugs that are well tolerated and safe. We believe our drug candidates in development for these patients have potential to meet these needs and help drive improved health outcomes," Stephen C. Glover, ZyVersa Co-Founder, CEO and Chairman.
ZyVersa Therapeutics was advised by Benchmark Company, Noble Capital Markets and Lowenstein Sandler (led by Michael J. Lerner, Jared Kelly and Steven M. Skolnick). Larkspur Health Acquisition was advised by Alliance Global Partners and Alston & Bird (led by Matthew Mamak). Alliance Global Partners was advised by Manatt Phelps & Phillips.
Kindeva Drug Delivery, a global contract development manufacturing organization, completed the merger with Meridian Medical Technologies, a manufacturer of EpiPen and other auto-injector and antidotes products. Kindeva and Meridian are operating companies of Altaris, a healthcare investment firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are incredibly excited about the opportunities that will result from the combination of two companies with deep roots in complex drug delivery. The integrated, complementary offerings of Kindeva and Meridian create a CDMO with a broad portfolio of capabilities and proprietary technology platforms across multiple drug delivery formats, enabling us to serve customers and communities across multiple large and growing end markets," Milton Boyer, Meridian CEO.
Altaris was advised by ArentFox Schiff and Kirkland & Ellis (led by David Feirstein and Michael Amalfe). Debt financing was provided by JP Morgan, KeyBanc Capital Markets and Truist Securities. Meridian was advised by SCORR Marketing.
Takeda, a pharmaceutical company, agreed to acquire Nimbus Lakshmi, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Nimbus Therapeutics, a developer of small molecule compounds, for $6bn.
“Nimbus’ allosteric TYK2 inhibitor has the potential to be a best-in-class medicine in multiple disease areas, and we are confident that Takeda’s commitment and capabilities will enable NDI-034858 to reach its full value to patients. The proposed acquisition highlights Nimbus’ ability to discover and develop high-value investigational medicines leveraging our computational structure-based drug design and development engine. We will continue to advance other exciting target programs in our R&D pipeline — including our selective HPK1 inhibitor, currently in a Phase 1/2 study in patients with solid tumors — as we have done since our founding in 2009," Jeb Keiper, Nimbus CEO.
Takeda is advised by Evercore and Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton. Nimbus is advised by JP Morgan, Goodwin Procter and Ten Bridge Communications.
WiMi Hologram Cloud-backed VIYI Algorithm, a company engaged in developing and applying bespoke central processing algorithms, went public via a SPAC merger with Venus Acquisition in a $400m deal.
VIYI Algo continues to adhere to its strategic mindset in the mid-to-long term. By improving upon each iteration of VIYI Algo's one-stop intelligent data management solutions made possible by its proprietary central processing algorithm services, VIYI Algo can help customers to enhance their service efficiency and make model innovations in business, and actively enhance the industry value of the central processing algorithm services in the general field of data intelligent processing industry.
VIYI Algorithm was advised by Maples Group and Zhuo Ne. Venus Acquisition was advised by Becker & Poliakoff and Ogier. WiMi was advised by DLA Piper.
Infinite Reality, a developer of metaverse innovation and entertainment platform, agreed to go public via a SPAC merger with Newbury Street Acquisition in a $1.85bn deal.
"Our team was blown away by the opportunity Infinite Reality has to truly revolutionize how people experience the internet in the future. Infinite Reality has the expertise, innovation, and scale to be a trailblazer helping brands connect directly with their audiences and customize their Metaverse experiences. Online commerce and entertainment will never be the same again. The creative talent and experience of this team sets iR apart, and all of us at Newbury are excited to be their long-term partner," Tom Bushey, Newbury CEO.
Infinite Reality is advised by Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson and Hill+Knowlton Strategies. Newbury is advised by Akerman.
Veris Residential, a real estate investment trust, is releasing a letter it sent to Kushner Companies, an American real estate developer, in the spirit of transparency and to ensure that all Veris Residential shareholders have equal access to important information regarding the company.
In its letter, the Board details its unanimous rejection of each of Kushner Companies' latest unsolicited proposals to acquire Veris Residential and a go-forward process to facilitate constructive dialogue between Veris Residential and Kushner Companies. The Board also reiterates its willingness to evaluate any proposals from interested buyers that will maximize the value of Veris Residential's shares to the benefit of all Veris Residential shareholders.
3E, a global provider of intelligent compliance solutions for chemical and workplace safety, agreed to acquire Toxnot, a software-as-a-service platform that enables product compliance and sustainability within supply chains. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We're excited to join 3E and bring our platform to a larger audience. 3E has a strong reputation of delivering innovative compliance solutions, and we look forward to working together to provide even better outcomes for our customers. Coupling our flexible and scalable software solution with 3E's deep regulatory domain expertise enables us to advance our mission of empowering clients to achieve compliance today, sustainability tomorrow, and circularity forever," Pete Girard, Toxnot Co-Founder and CEO.
3E is advised by Shearman & Sterling (led by Alain Dermarkar). Toxnot is advised by Moulton Law Group.
Riata Capital Group, a Dallas-based private equity investment firm, completed the investment in Salon Republic, an operator of company-owned salon suites that provides individual salon studio venues and value-added services to beauty care professionals. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are excited to partner with such a well-positioned and well-managed platform. We believe Eric and the Salon Republic leadership team have built an impressive business with a differentiated service offering and a strong economic model. Salon Republic locations are designed to meet the strong secular demand from BCPs seeking the independence, autonomy, and economic advantages of having their own business in upscale environments with value-added services offerings and stimulating overall beauty care ecosystems. We expect to continue to deploy additional capital in the platform to support the Company's continued organic expansion along with pursuing strategic add-on acquisitions," Jeff Fronterhouse, RCG Managing Partner.
BGSF, a national provider of consulting, managed services and workforce solutions, completed the acquisition of Horn Solutions, a recognized, Texas-based workforce solutions firm specializing in business consulting, managed services, and executive search. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are pleased to welcome the entire Horn Solutions team to BGSF. Horn’s people and relationships add depth and breadth to our existing high-value business consulting and managed service platforms, allowing us to expand on our existing IT managed services. In 2023 and beyond, we anticipate cross-selling opportunities, as well as synergies," Beth Garvey, BGSF Chair, President, and CEO.
BGSF was advised by Norton Rose Fulbright and Three Part Advisors.
HOLT-backed Texas First Rentals, a construction equipment rental company, completed the acquisition of Rental One, a full-service equipment and storage container rental company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Rental One is an excellent strategic and cultural fit that complements our existing products and services. More importantly, Rental One is a multi-generational, family-owned Texas company. As a family-owned business ourselves, we know the value of such an organization and what that means to our customers,” Peter J. Holt, HOLT CEO and General Manager.
Texas First Rentals was advised by KGB Texas Communications.
The Riverside Company, a global private investor, completed the acquisition of AlphaGroup Medical Communications, a scientific, medical affairs, and outcomes communication service provider for the pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device/diagnostic industries. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“The AlphaGroup investment bolsters the RN medical communications business unit with high-science publications capabilities. The add-on also strengthens our capability offering by expanding the portfolio into new pharma customers and further augments our deep scientific acumen by adding over 35 employees with advanced scientific degrees to the business," Peter Tsang, Riverside Co-CIO.
The Riverside Company was advised by Jones Day (led by Lisa Lathrop).
Stellex Capital, an investment services provider, agreed to acquire three firms deploying sophisticated data-driven solutions to provide mission-critical risk, fraud mitigation, and regulatory compliance services, G2, LCI, and Fintellix from TransUnion, an American consumer credit reporting agency, for $176m.
“We are confident that Stellex’s industry knowledge, operating capabilities, network of senior executives, strategic insight and access to capital make it an ideal home for these businesses, and we look forward to a smooth transition," Chris Cartwright, TransUnion President and CEO.
Manulife Investment Management, a global wealth and asset management segment of Manulife Financial, completed the $100m investment in EDF-backed PowerFlex, a provider of intelligent solar, storage, and electric vehicle charging solutions for commercial and industrial customers.
“We are excited to partner with Manulife Investment Management, whose team brings an in-depth understanding of infrastructure trends that will help us continue providing our clients with reliable and cutting-edge clean energy solutions. PowerFlex’s accompanying digital products optimize the system performance of all onsite energy assets to generate greater cost savings and increase efficiency. The investment will help advance our mission of electrifying the transportation sector and deploying low-carbon infrastructure in a way that also supports a cleaner, more decentralized and resilient grid,” Raphael Declercq, PowerFlex CEO.
DIH Technology to go public via a SPAC merger with Aurora Technology Acquisition, a global robotics, and virtual reality technology provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are very impressed by both the entrepreneurial spirit driving ATAK's management team as well as its diverse and well-respected board members and advisors. We believe the combination with ATAK will facilitate our launch as a public company with strong corporate governance, expand our capital market expertise, and enhance our strategic investment capabilities, including M&A. These all are critical to DIH's growth strategy as a transformative and innovative total solution provider and consolidator in the highly fragmented rehabilitation technology industry," Jason Chen, DIH CEO and Chairman.
Premium Plant Services, a company providing a complete array of industrial cleaning services, including dry ice blasting, completed the acquisition of US Cleanblast, an industrial cleaning and restoration company, and the Midwest division of Emory Industrial Services, a provider of dry ice blasting services. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are pleased to announce these acquisitions, as both companies are expected to bring us the necessary expertise and experience to further advance our organization into new industries and markets throughout the United States. Looking ahead, we believe we are well-positioned to be the leader in the industrial cleaning space, through greater geographic coverage, diversified service offerings and vast expertise,” Mark Parenteau, Premium CEO.
Constellation Software, a Canadian diversified software company, and Lumine Group, a global acquirer of communications & media software businesses, agreed to acquire WideOrbit, a US-based media vertical market software provider.
“Lumine Group is the ideal partner to support WideOrbit’s continued growth ambitions. Our partnership with Lumine will build on our 23-year legacy and contribute to a stronger future for the company, our employees, and our valued clients. At a time when the media advertising landscape is evolving and generating more demand, the timing could not be more optimal. I look forward to what the future holds for WideOrbit and Lumine Group,” Eric Mathewson, WideOrbit Founder and CEO.
Insight Partners weighs a $2bn Community Brands sale. (FS)
Bloomberg reported that Insight Partners, a private equity and venture capital firm, is exploring the sale of Community Brands, which makes software used for donations, peer-to-peer fundraising, admissions and events, among other purposes.
The New York-based investment firm is working with FT Partners to solicit interest from potential suitors, which may include larger software vendors or private equity firms. Community Brands could fetch as much as $2bn, including debt, in any transaction.
SpaceX tender offer is said to value company at $140bn.
Elon Musk’s SpaceX is offering to sell insider shares at a price that would raise the closely held company’s valuation to about $140bn, Bloomberg reported.
Space Exploration Technologies is offering the shares for $77 apiece. The $140bn figure compares with a $127bn valuation in July.
Global debt market lost at least $75bn of business in 2022.
More debt financing was canceled or postponed globally in 2022 than even during the tumultuous pandemic period, Bloomberg reported.
Roughly 140 fund-raising transactions including bonds, loans, and asset-backed securities worth at least $75bn were pulled in 2022, only slightly below the combined tally of 2021 and 2020.
Gold Fields CEO steps down after failed Yamana bid.
Martin Preece, who runs Gold Fields’ South Deep mine, becomes interim CEO at the bullion producer.
“The Yamana setback should not be allowed to impede the company’s strategy. So I felt that I should take responsibility and allow the company to move forward under new leadership unencumbered by the Yamana transaction," Chris Griffith.
KIC expands strategic partnership with Golub Capital. (FS)
The Korea Investment Corporation, a sovereign wealth fund, and Golub Capital, an investment management firm, have expanded their strategic partnership, with KIC acquiring a passive, non-voting minority stake in Golub Capital's management companies. KIC's stake represents an economic interest in Golub Capital's management companies of less than 5%.
All proceeds from the transaction will remain invested in Golub Capital. At the same time, the firm's strategy, management team, and day-to-day operations will not change due to KIC's investment.
Golub Capital was advised by Evercore, JP Morgan and Kirkland & Ellis. KIC was advised by KPMG and Greenberg Traurig.
Fifth Wall closes $866m fund. (FS)
Fifth Wall, the largest venture capital firm focused on technology for the global real estate industry, closed its Real Estate Technology Fund III totaling $866m. On the heels of its $147m European Real Estate Technology Fund, which closed in February, this brings the firm’s total capital raised toward property technology investment to more than $1bn over the last year.
“When we started Fifth Wall in 2016, PropTech was not yet a term. Since then we believe that we played an intrinsic role in the ecosystem’s evolution and continue to propel it forward not only via capital, but industry awareness and strategic collaboration between our startups and real estate limited partners,” Brendan Wallace, Fifth Wall Co-Founder & Managing Partner.
American Pacific Group closes fund at $700m hard cap. (FS)
American Pacific Group, a private equity firm focused on partnering with lower middle market companies across industries in North America, has closed its second fund, American Pacific Group Fund II at its hard cap of $700m. The fund was oversubscribed.
The fund attracted commitments from institutional investors based in the United States and Europe, including endowments, foundations, a healthcare system, insurance companies, family offices, pension systems, and asset managers.
Belstar launches new flagship global credit strategy. (FS)
Belstar Management Company, a global credit investment firm, has launched a new flagship credit fund, Belstar Credit Opportunities Fund, to invest across liquid and private credit opportunities, including both corporate and structured credit assets, globally.
"The new fund seek to provide investors with exposure to attractive risk-adjusted returns leveraging Belstar’s fundamentals-driven investment process and opportunistic credit expertise in both public and private markets," Belstar. To support a subset of the investment strategy, Belstar intends to partner with Apollo to access credit assets originated across Apollo’s global platform.
EnTrust Global appoints a president. (FS, People)
Alternative asset management firm EnTrust Global has appointed Sophia Mullen as president, a newly-created role at the company. Mullen will continue to head EnTrust Global’s $8bn opportunistic co-investment strategy and remain on EnTrust Global’s Management Committee and Global Investment Committee.
As the firm’s President, Mullen will focus on expanding the company’s global presence, and pursuing other innovative opportunities for the firm’s increasingly diverse institutional investor base.
Novozymes, a Danish food ingredients and enzyme maker, agreed to acquire Chr. Hansen, a bioscience company, for $12.3bn.
"The combination of two strategically complementary companies with a shared purpose and advanced capabilities will show the world the true power of biosolutions. Today's announcement is fully aligned with Novozymes' strategy and is another step towards unlocking additional growth opportunities. Novozymes and Chr. Hansen share the strong conviction that our combined scale, know-how, commercial strengths, and innovation excellence will drive value for our shareholders, customers, and society at large by providing the sustainable solutions the world so urgently needs," Ester Baiget, Novozymes President and CEO.
Chr. Hansen is advised by Goldman Sachs, Baker McKenzie, Gorrissen Federspiel and Impact Partners. Novozymes is advised by Danske Bank, Gordon Dyal & Co, Nordea Bank, Oxera, Davis Polk & Wardwell (led by Connie I. Milonakis and Will Pearce), Linklaters, Plesner, FGS Global and Point Communications.
Sagard NewGen, a European investment fund, agreed to invest in Unit8, a Swiss data services company with a mission to help its clients turn data into value with a mix of data science, analytics, and AI. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are very proud to partner with Unit8’s outstanding management team in this new development phase. Sagard will put all of its resources at the Company’s disposal, leveraging our expertise in supporting tech companies, our deep ecosystem in AI/ML, and our strong commercial network, to bolster Unit8’s organic growth internationally," Guillaume Lefebvre, Sagard NewGen Partner.
Trimble, a SaaS technology company, agreed to acquire Transporeon, a cloud-based transportation management software platform, from Hg, a private equity firm, for €1.88bn.
"The past three years has significantly accelerated Transporeon forward in our mission to bring transportation in sync with the world. Innovation in our products and an expansion of the business has meant we have built a remarkable platform in a rapidly growing sector, with solutions that are in high demand globally. This would not have been possible without the software expertise delivered by Hg. The management team thank everyone at Hg and Transporeon who have worked hard together to put us in this very advantageous position," Stephan Sieber, Transporeon CEO.
Trimble is advised by Centerview Partners, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and FGS Global (led by John Christiansen, Peter Siwinski and Sebastian Mewissen). Debt financing is provided by Bank of America. Transporeon is advised by Goldman Sachs and Latham & Watkins. Hg is advised by Brunswick Group (led by Azadeh Varzi).
Gordon Rubenstein, the head of Raine Group’s venture capital arm, has agreed to join US digital entrepreneur John Textor in his planned takeover of French football club Olympique Lyonnais.
Rubenstein's joining Textor’s consortium in a personal capacity as he sees a lot of upside in the French league. He said his background in technology and content could help Lyon with fan engagement, Bloomberg reported.
Olympique Lyonnais is advised by Ernst & Young and Gide Loyrette Nouel. Eagle Football is advised by DLA Piper. IDG Capital Partners is advised by The Raine Group and Allen & Overy. Holnest is advised by Delsol Avocats (led by Henri-Louis Delsol).
Perwyn, a European private equity investor, completed the acquisition of Vixio, a provider of regulatory intelligence intended to offer in-depth insight, analysis, commentary, and research information, from Kester Capital, a lower mid-market private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We are delighted to be partnering with the Vixio team and support their ambitious growth plans. Already the market leader, we will be investing to enhance and increase the product offering and geographic coverage whilst maintaining and enhancing its leading reputation as the go to provider for regulatory intelligence in both the payments and gambling market. We look forward to working with Mike and the team," Gurinder Sunner, Perwyn Partner.
Vixio was advised by Flagship Advisory Partners, Plural Strategy Group, BDO, Jamieson, KPMG and Osborne Clarke.
Surteco North America, a full-service provider of decorative surfaces, agreed to acquire the laminates, films, and coated fabrics businesses from Synthomer, a specialty chemicals company, for $255m.
"This divestment is consistent with our recently announced strategy to increase the specialty weighting of our portfolio and focus on higher value, higher growth markets where we have strong and sustainable leadership positions. The proceeds represent excellent value for our shareholders, and the transaction is a significant step in the deleveraging of the Group. I would like to thank those colleagues leaving Synthomer and wish them well for the future," Michael Willome, Synthomer CEO.
Iakov Panchenko, a retail fashion investor, completed the acquisition of Lamoda, an operator of an online shopping platform, from Global Fashion Group, an online fashion portal, for €95m.
“We extend our deepest gratitude to the Lamoda team for their unequivocal dedication to their customers over the years. We are handing the business over to a new owner who is committed to preserving Lamoda’s responsible operations, culture, and 8k-strong employee base. Looking ahead, rising e-commerce penetration will continue to drive long-term growth in GFG’s markets. We are committed to delivering on our vision as the #1 online fashion and lifestyle destination in LATAM, SEA, and ANZ. We have the team, customer base, brand partnerships, infrastructure, and financial strength to drive success while being people and planet positive," Christoph Barchewitz and Patrick Schmidt, GFG Co-CEOs.
GFG was advised by Xenon Capital and Balayan Group.
EQT, a private equity firm, and ATHOS, a venture capital firm, agreed to invest in SHL Medical, a provider of drug delivery solutions. Roger Samuelsson, SHL Medical founder, will remain the majority shareholder. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Above all else, SHL Medical’s success has been predicated on an unresolving commitment to improving the lives of patients. We have a great partnership with EQT and are excited to work closely with EQT Future, ATHOS, and the other co-investors to accelerate our global expansion and to develop new drug delivery solution offerings. Together, we will continue to build and grow the company to provide the best possible service to our customers and for patients around the globe," Ulrich Faessler, SHL CEO.
EY, a provider of professional services, completed the acquisition of ifb, an international finance and risk transformation, and compliance consultancy. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The expectations for financial services firms to transform their businesses has never been higher. Clients are looking for EY teams to provide transformation services with the support of EY Alliance partners like SAP. The EY and ifb organizations have built a relationship over the years doing just that, and now we are delighted to be welcoming Christian Moser and Claus Stegmann and the ifb teams to EY so that we can continue to do this for more clients around the globe. They will join growing teams - our European Financial Services technology consulting businesses grew by circa 40% in the past year, and I have no doubt they will help EY teams to continue providing the services our clients need," Omar Ali, EY EMEIA Financial Services Regional Managing Partner.
Tikehau Capital, a global alternative asset manager, completed the acquisition of Isotrol, a developer of proprietary software solutions for the renewable energy sector. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“This milestone marks the recognition of the work done by the entire Isotrol team during its long history, and marks the beginning of a new phase that will allow us to develop our full potential for the benefit of our customers in the Energy Transition. It is a privilege to have a partner like Tikehau Capital, with whom we share values of excellence and commitment to fighting climate change,” Manuel Losada, Isotrol CEO.
LSEG and Microsoft launch a 10-year strategic partnership. (FS)
London Stock Exchange Group and Microsoft have entered into a new long-term strategic partnership to architect LSEG's data infrastructure using the Microsoft Cloud and jointly develop new products and services for data and analytics. The partnership will build on the excellent progress made by LSEG in integrating Refinitiv and enhance its position as a world-leading financial markets infrastructure and data provider.
With the Microsoft Cloud and its AI capabilities, the deal significantly advances LSEG's strategy of building an efficient and scalable platform for its Data & Analytics business to deliver next-generation services for a range of customers across the financial markets value chain through improved workflow and greater flexibility.
Microsoft has agreed to purchase shares in LSEG that would result in Microsoft holding approximately a 4% equity stake in LSEG, such shares to be bought from Blackstone, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, GIC, and Thomson Reuters.
"Advances in the cloud and AI will fundamentally transform how financial institutions research, interact, and transact across asset classes and adapt to changing market conditions. Our partnership will bring together the industry leadership of the London Stock Exchange Group with the trust and breadth of the Microsoft Cloud — spanning Azure, AI, and Teams — to build next-generation services that will empower our customers to generate business insights, automate complex and time-consuming processes, and ultimately, do more with less," Satya Nadella, Microsoft Chairman and CEO.
Microsoft is advised by Barclays.
Rio Tinto is looking for lithium deals as demand and prices soar.
Rio Tinto is actively looking for lithium acquisitions, predicting prices for the key raw material in electric-vehicle batteries will stay high for a “long period of time.”
The world’s second-biggest mining company is pursuing “organic and M&A growth opportunities” in the sector, Bloomberg reported.
Investors are discussing with TKMS a possible stake in the company.
Private equity investors have approached submarine builder Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems to discuss the possibility of taking a stake in the company, Reuters reported.
ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems of Germany is a group and holding company of providers of naval vessels, surface ships and submarines.
Turkish carrier MNG looks to expand with SPAC listing proceeds.
MNG Cargo Airlines, a Turkish logistics and transport company, is looking to use funds raised from a planned listing in New York to expand in the US and Europe and add to its fleet of nine Airbus planes, Bloomberg reported.
The freight specialist will seek to attract new customers with a range of end-to-end services beyond air transportation, including warehousing and handling, said Chief Executive Officer Ali Sedat Ozkazanc. The Istanbul-based group is looking to add one Airbus A321 jet and will consider widebody planes.
ADNOC invites banks to pitch for gas business IPO.
Abu Dhabi National Oil Company has invited investment banks to pitch for roles in the initial public offering of its gas business next year, Reuters reported.
A request was sent to a select number of banks last week for proposals to act as joint global coordinators and bookrunners in the IPO, to join Goldman Sachs as part of a planned syndicate.
Whoosh tests Russian IPO interest as foreign investors frozen out.
Corporate Russia is watching closely this week as electric scooter firm Whoosh braves Russian economic isolation with Moscow's first IPO since the country sent troops into Ukraine, Reuters reported.
While breathing life into a moribund market, Whoosh's IPO could prove the exception as firms struggle to get close to valuations they once envisaged, bankers and strategists said. Whoosh more than halved the size of its initial public offering to $36m from an earlier $80m target, saying shareholders would not now sell shares. With the large Western banks that usually underwrote IPOs to major institutional investors gone, companies now need to sell smaller volumes to largely retail investors.
Permira adds a senior adviser to the global tech team. (FS, People)
Global private equity firm Permira has appointed Andy Eckert as a senior adviser to its global technology team, focusing on healthcare technology investments. Eckert will also work with the firm’s healthcare team on broader opportunities in the sector.
Eckert has over 30 years of experience managing and growing healthcare companies. He currently serves on the board of directors of Becton, Dickinson and Company, a global medical technology leader, and was most recently CEO of Zelis, a payments technology and cost containment platform which aims to modernise the financial healthcare system. Eckert also previously served as chairman of the board of directors at Varian, a company dedicated to innovative cancer care that became part of Siemens Healthineers through a $16.4bn acquisition in 2021.
India’s biggest merger ever will likely take away from the rupee bond market one of its top issuers, an absence that may weigh on debt sales and arrangement fees for banks.
The consolidation of Housing Development Finance and HDFC Bank will create a more than $200bn financial services behemoth, and the parent will be able to tap the bank’s deposits to grow, rather than pile on more debt. That’s not all bad for India’s bond world as the hole created by the shadow lender may let new borrowers sell notes, helping India deepen its debt market.
HDFC Bank is advised by Deloitte, Harsh Chandrakant Ruparelia, BNP Paribas, Citigroup, Edelweiss Capital, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, ICICI Bank, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Nomura, Cravath Swaine & Moore (led by Philip Boeckman), and Wadia Ghandy (led by Gopal Bankar and Ashish Ahuja). Financial advisors are advised by Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (led by Arun Balasubramanian and Vinita Sithapathy). Housing Development Finance is advised by Bansi S. Mehta & Co, Ambit, Arpwood Capital, Axis Capital, Bank of America, Credit Suisse, IIFL, JM Financial, Jefferies & Company, Kotak Investment Banking, Motilal, AZB & Partners (led by Zia Mody and Ashwath Rau), Argus Partners (led by Krishnava Dutt), Singhi Advisors and Nova Dhruva Capital. Financial advisors are advised by Sullivan & Cromwell (led by Stephen M. Kotran and Jeffrey W. MacDonald).
Petroleum Sarawak Exploration & Production, a firm engaged in the export and import of crude petroleum oils, extraction of crude petroleum oils, and production of crude gaseous hydrocarbon, agreed to acquire a minority interest in two offshore production sharing contracts in Baram Delta, a collection of oil, and oil and gas fields, from Shell, an oil and chemical group, for $525m.
“This decision is in line with our work to continue focusing our portfolio. Malaysia remains one of our eight core upstream positions worldwide, and we will continue to help power the country’s progress by investing in the oil and gas needed today, as well as in the transition to a low-carbon energy system," Zoe Yujnovich, Shell Upstream Director.
Epiroc, a productivity and sustainability partner for the mining and infrastructure industries, agreed to acquire CR, a manufacturer of mining wear parts and consumables. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“This acquisition will expand our offering of innovative and high-quality consumables and digital solutions that strengthen customers’ productivity and safety. We look forward to welcome the strong team at CR to Epiroc," Helena Hedblom, Epiroc President and CEO.
CR is advised by Jefferies & Company.
Orient Group plans to buy a 25% stake in United Energy.
Chinese wholesales agricultural products provider Orient Group's unit planned to buy a 25% stake in United Energy Group, a firm engaged in the investment and operation of upstream oil, natural gas, and other energy-related businesses, for $723m, Reuters reported.
Orient Group's unit will set up an overseas special-purpose vehicle for the planned acquisition.
Berkshire has now offloaded more than 25% of BYD stake.
Berkshire Hathaway, a conglomerate holding company, further trimmed its stake in Chinese electric vehicle maker BYD, offloading 1.3m Hong Kong-listed shares to take its holding below 15%. That means the investment house has now sold more than one-quarter of its position in five months, Bloomberg reported.
Warren Buffett’s firm started publicly reducing its stake in Shenzhen-based BYD in August, when it cut its holding from 20.49% to 19.92%. The pace of sales accelerated in November. Berkshire only has to disclose sales of 1% or more, with any transactions to counterparties under that figure not publicized. Berkshire’s holding now stands at 14.95%.
Apple's Japan investment crosses $100bn.
Apple, a technology company, said it had invested more than $100bn in its Japanese supply network over the last five years, as its Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook visited the epicenter of the country's semiconductor industry.
Apple has boosted its spending on suppliers in Japan by more than 30% since 2019, with a network spanning nearly 1k companies, from multi-nationals to family-run businesses, Reuters reported.
GIC-backed unicorn is in talks to acquire Foodpanda. (FS)
Food delivery unicorn Line Man Wongnai is in talks to acquire Delivery Hero’s Foodpanda in Thailand as it plans for a stock-market debut in the next few years, Bloomberg reported.
Bangkok-based Line Man Wongnai considered a deal at around $100m at one point, but the value is likely to have changed with the deterioration of the wider market and internal views toward loss-making businesses. The company is backed by Line and Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC.
Tycoon Birla is said to weigh selling insurance brokerage unit.
Bloomberg reported that Aditya Birla Capital, controlled by billionaire Kumar Mangalam Birla, is considering selling its insurance brokerage unit as the group seeks to restructure its financial services business.
The publicly-traded company has held talks with potential buyers about a sale of Aditya Birla Insurance Brokers as it failed to scale up the 19-year-old business. It is one of India’s largest composite insurers, offering both life and non-life policies, yet the unit reported revenue of only $73m in the year to March 31, 2021.
Paytm’s surprise share buyback plan is drawing skepticism.
Paytm’s plan to buy back shares has left investors surprised and worried about the loss-making Indian fintech firm’s growth prospects as it uses funds to prop up its hammered stock, Bloomberg reported.
The board of One 97 Communications, the listed entity that runs Paytm, will decide on the buyback on December 13. The move comes as the stock has plunged about 75% since its listing last November to emerge as the world’s worst-performing large initial public offering in a decade. The slump also prompted a unit of Japan’s SoftBank — a key backer — to trim its holding.
No Renault deal by year-end, as some at Nissan urge caution.
Nissan Motor doesn't expect to reach an agreement with top shareholder Renault by year-end on retooling their alliance as some of the Japanese automaker's board members are pushing to move cautiously, Reuters reported.
Renault wants Nissan to invest in a new electric-vehicle unit it plans to spin off as part of a significant overhaul. Nissan wants Renault to sell some of its roughly 43% in the Japanese company to put the two carmakers on equal footing.
Zeekr files for US IPO.
China's Geely Automobile said its electric car brand, Zeekr, had confidentially filed for a US initial public offering, in what would be the first major Chinese listing in the country in nearly two years.
Zeekr filed with US regulators without providing any details on the size of its IPO or its listing date, which in October had laid out plans to spin off the subsidiary.
PAG closes APAC's largest private credit fund at $2.6bn. (FS)
Hong Kong-headquartered alternative investment firm PAG has closed its fifth pan-Asian direct lending fund worth $2.6bn, DealStreetAsia reported.
The fund is the largest of its kind in Asia-Pacific to date. It received capital commitments from 20 institutional investors, including sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, and endowments in North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia-Pacific.
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