Britain's competition regulator has provisionally cleared Broadcom's $69bn deal to buy VMware, adding that it would not weaken competition in the supply of critical computer server products.
The Competition and Markets Authority raised concerns that the deal could make servers more expensive, prompting an in-depth investigation, Reuters reported.
"After examining the evidence gathered from Broadcom, VMware and other interested parties, an independent CMA panel has provisionally found the deal would not substantially reduce competition in the supply of server hardware components in the UK," CMA.
Activision Blizzard has extended the deadline for the close of its $69bn takeover by Microsoft to October 18 as the companies work to secure approval from the UK's antitrust authority, Reuters reported.
The "Call of Duty" publisher said the companies also agreed to increase the deal termination fee to $3.5bn from $3bn if it does not close by August 29. The fee will further rise to $4.5bn after September 15.
Alpine Investors-backed AirDNA, a short-term rental data provider, completed the acquisition of Arrivalist, a location intelligence platform. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"By welcoming Arrivalist to AirDNA, we’re accelerating our growth trajectory and reinforcing our commitment to delivering industry-leading insights to our customers. The union of our powerful data platforms will provide businesses with unrivaled intelligence, empowering them to strategize with increased precision," Demi Horvat, AirDNA CEO.
Arrivalist is advised by Cosine Group. Alpine Investors is advised by Morrison & Foerster (led by Patrick Huard).
Sequoia Financial, an SEC-registered wealth manager, agreed to acquire Cirrus Wealth Management, an independent wealth management firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"It's reassuring to know that our team and clients will be in extremely capable hands—right in our own backyard—when we join Sequoia, a like-minded firm that has the technology and resources to support our growing business. Sequoia is working thoughtfully to build a custom transition plan and is providing growth opportunities for the Cirrus team," Joe Heider, Cirrus President.
Sequoia Financial is advised by Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff. Cirrus Wealth Management is advised by Hahn Loeser & Parks.
CISO Global, a cybersecurity and compliance provider, completed the acquisition of SB Cyber Technologies, a cybersecurity company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"SB Cyber enables us to accelerate our strategy to bring additional talent and a powerful leading-edge technology to our customers at a time when cyber threats are increasingly becoming more prevalent and harder to circumvent," David Jemmett, CISO Global Founder and CEO.
Morgan Stanley joins other banks in rush to raise capital.
Morgan Stanley is adding to the recent wave of bank bond sales in the US investment-grade market, a sign that issuance is still going strong as lenders emerge from earnings blackout periods, Bloomberg reported.
The bank is in the market with a four-part deal. Initial pricing discussions for the longest dated portion of the offering, an 11-year fixed-to-floating rate note, may yield in the area of 1.85% points over Treasuries.
Davidson Kempner Capital Management announces the close of $3bn Davidson Kempner Opportunities Fund VI. (FS)
With a flexible and opportunistic mandate, DK Opportunities Fund VI targets investments in less liquid, longer-duration situations arising from capital dislocations, motivated sellers, and substantial asset or structural complexity. The Fund builds upon the track record of five previous vintages which have collectively invested over $10bn since the inception in 2011. The funds are diversified across geographies, industries and investment types, including corporates, real estate, structured products, infrastructure and hard assets.
“The Fund’s close underscores the confidence that investors have in Davidson Kempner’s opportunistic strategies and the strength of our track record. Given the Fund’s focus on capital dislocations and special situations, we believe that the Fund is well-positioned to take advantage of the wealth of opportunities we expect to emerge amid the current environment of higher volatility and tightening liquidity,” Tony Yoseloff, Davidson Kempner Capital Executive Managing Member and CIO.
Bain Capital raises $1.15bn for first fund dedicated to insurance investments. (FS)
Bain Capital has raised $1.15bn for its first fund dedicated to investing in the insurance industry, as the private equity firm aims to create and invest in companies in the sector, Reuters reported.
The fund exceeded its initial $750m target through backing from high-net-worth individuals, institutional investors and family offices. It will be deployed through Bain Capital Insurance, a dedicated investment arm the firm launched in 2021. The new fund underscores the increasing role that private equity is looking to play in the insurance sector, as providers seek to cut costs by shedding assets, which buyout firms can manage more efficiently and grow through add-on acquisitions.
Nomura PC taps BlackRock exec as Head of Opportunistic Private Credit. (FS, People)
Nomura Private Capital has appointed Steve Kavulich, a portfolio manager and investment committee member at BlackRock, as the firm's new Head of Opportunistic Private Credit, based in its New York office.
In his new role, Kavulich will help lead the continued build-out of NPC’s investment management business in the Americas, overseeing all aspects of the investment process to identify and deploy capital across the private credit markets.
The Competition and Markets Authority has launched an inquiry into the merger of platform Nucleus and self-invested personal pension provider Curtis Banks.
This comes seven months after Nucleus agreed to acquire Curtis Banks Group for a total equity value of £242m ($293m). The transaction, which is an all-cash offer, will bring together the Nucleus Group and the Curtis Banks Group to create a retirement-focused adviser platform with approximately £80bn of assets under administration.
Impala, an investment firm, and Exor, a diversified holding company, agreed to invest in TagEnergy, a renewable energy and energy storage company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We have increased our focus in ESG in recent years and particularly in the energy transition essential for achieving a decarbonised future. As large sectors of the economy become increasingly electrified, the development of renewable, carbon-free sources of electricity is more necessary than ever. This will be coupled with a growing need to store intermittently-generated energy and stabilise grids that were previously designed around more centralised and controllable production centres. In joining forces with Jacques Veyrat and the TagEnergy team, who have proven their deep knowledge of the sector and their long-term commitment to building a great company, we are choosing to support an outstanding team in dynamic geographies with great potential," John Elkann, Exor CEO.
Montefiore Investment, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire oXya, a SAP infrastructure solution provider, from Hitachi Vantara, a technology company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Over the last eight years, with its expertise in SAP hosting and BASIS services, oXya has been a successful and profitable acquisition for Hitachi Vantara. As we look forward, we believe this deal positions both oXya and Hitachi Vantara for continued growth against our respective opportunities. Following the completion of this deal, Hitachi Vantara will continue to pursue our SAP implementation and support business and will maintain a consistent and continuing business relationship with oXya. As such, customers and partners can expect the same excellent service without disruption," Roger Lvin, Hitachi Vantara President of Digital Solutions Business Unit.
Macquarie, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire a 20% stake in the gas transmission and metering business of National Grid, an electricity and gas utility company, in a £9.6bn ($12.5bn) deal.
“This additional investment underlines our commitment to National Gas and the critical role it plays in the UK’s energy system. We have been working closely with the National Gas team since January as they have continued to meet the energy needs of millions of households and businesses. We are pleased to continue our strong relationship with National Grid, and aspire to acquire the Remaining Interest in due course," Martin Bradley, Macquarie European Head of Infrastructure.
Spectrum Equity, a private equity firm, completed a $100m investment in Netcraft, a company that operates in cybercrime detection, disruption sector.
"This significant funding will help us accelerate progress toward our mission of detecting and disrupting cybercrime at scale to create a safer online experience for everyone. Powered by an exceptionally talented team, Netcraft's speed, scale, and effectiveness is unmatched in the global fight against cybercrime. I am excited to join this team and work alongside a distinguished group of customers and partners in furthering our innovative approach to protecting the world from cybercrime," Ryan Woodley, Netcraft CEO.
Refrigeration services providers Epta and Viessmann Refrigeration Solutions, agreed to form Epta Central North Europe, a joint venture to provide commercial refrigeration services in North and Central Europe. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Epta and Viessmann Refrigeration Solutions both strive for a positive impact with solutions that contribute to preserving the planet. We combine the best of both worlds: highly energy-efficient state-of-the-art solutions with scale and manufacturing power. Together, we co-create the best prospect for our customers, our employees, and for the generations to come," Frank Winters, Viessmann Refrigeration CEO.
Nordea, a financial services group, agreed to acquire the personal customer and private banking business in Norway of Danske Bank, a Nordic universal bank offering a full range of banking services. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are very pleased to announce this acquisition, which is an important step in executing our Nordic strategy, and which expands our presence in Norway in a complementary manner. It will add significant scale to our Personal Banking business in Norway and offers value creation opportunities through clear revenue and cost synergies. Most importantly, this will serve our new customers, who will benefit from our broad financial offering, expertise and leading digital services,” Frank Vang-Jensen, Nordea President and CEO.
ASSA ABLOY-backed HID Global, a developer and provider of security identity software, to acquire Evolis, a company that develops, manufactures and markets a complete range of personalization solutions for ID cards, for €225m ($253m).
"I am looking forward to welcoming Evolis into the ASSA ABLOY Group. Evolis would be a good technological addition to the ASSA ABLOY Group and would reinforce our current offering within the secure issuance business," Nico Delvaux, ASSA ABLOY CEO.
Blackstone, a private equity firm, agreed to invest $150m in Astaris, an alternative investment manager.
Securing a seed investment from Blackstone provides Astaris with credibility and validation in the competitive hedge fund industry. It helps establish the firm’s credentials and positions them for further commitments from other investors. Additionally, Blackstone benefits by becoming an early investor in promising newcomers, leveraging their expertise and potential for future growth.
SoftBank Vision Fund 2, a fund with a goal to invest in AI-based technology, led a $65m Series E funding round in Tractable, a developer of software that uses computer vision to assess the condition of cars and homes, with participation from Insight Partners and Georgian.
"We are excited to work with Alex, Razvan and team, who have been the forerunners of applying AI computer vision to bring efficiency into the insurance claims management process via applying AI computer vision. As strong believers in AI technology, we see huge potential for the technology to scale globally, embedding AI adoption into other verticals through exploring new use cases. Tractable already has strong traction in auto, whereas property is the exciting new opportunity that is ripe for disruption," Nahoko Hoshino, SoftBank Investment Advisers Investment Director.
Adnoc is in advanced talks to buy Covestro in a €11bn deal.
Abu Dhabi National Oil, the energy giant seeking to expand its chemical operations through a series of ambitious deals, has boosted its takeover offer for Covestro to about €11bn ($12.4bn), Bloomberg reported.
Adnoc increased its proposal to about €57 ($64m) per share in the hopes of convincing the German company to enter talks. That’s up from its first informal bid of around €55 ($62m).
Clifford Chance rules out merger as revenues top £2bn for first time.
Clifford Chance, one of the UK’s so-called magic circle law firms, has ruled out a merger as it recorded its first-ever year with revenues of more than £2bn ($2.6bn). The global law firm said it would instead pursue a strategy of “steady and confident growth” in its US business, FT reported.
Charles Adams, the firm’s global managing partner, made the comments as the London-based law firm unveiled its annual results on Wednesday. By contrast, Allen & Overy, an arch-rival, announced plans for a $3.4bn merger with the US law firm Shearman & Sterling in May. Partners in both firms are due to vote on the transaction later this year.
Canada’s CDPQ weighs boosting stakes in key Dubai assets. (FS)
Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec is considering investing billions of dollars to increase its holdings in some of Dubai’s most prized shipping and logistic assets, Bloomberg reported.
The Canadian pension fund is in talks to boost its stakes in the Middle East’s biggest port, Jebel Ali Port, the Jebel Ali Free Zone and National Industries Park industrial zones. All are controlled by state-owned DP World.
Ilex Capital Partners raise $1.8bn for hedge fund. (FS)
Former Citadel traders Jonas Diedrich and Dave Sutton have exceeded the capital raise target for their hedge fund, making it the biggest startup of the year, Bloomberg reported.
London-based Ilex Capital Partners started trading with client assets of $1.8bn on July 1. The firm is in the process of adding a couple of hundred million more in capital this month and will stop accepting money on August 1.
L Catterton-backed Oddity surpasses goal with $424m IPO. (FS)
Beauty and wellness company Oddity Tech and its shareholders raised $424m in an upsized initial public offering after pricing shares above a marketed range, Bloomberg reported.
The Tel Aviv-based company, along with its founder and private equity firm L Catterton, sold about 12.1m shares for $35 each. Oddity had marketed 10.5m shares for $32 to $34.
France’s Eurazeo closes second smart city fund at €400m. (FS)
French investment group Eurazeo has announced the third and final closing of its second smart city fund at €400m ($450m). Its first was an early backer of top European startups including Glovo and Forsee Power.
The new fund is supported by five sovereign wealth and development institutions — the European Investment Fund, Bpifrance, PFR, FRC and the Korean Venture Investment Corporation — as well as corporations and family offices across Europe and Asia.
KKA Partners closes oversubscribed Fund II at €230m. (FS)
KKA Partners, a Berlin-based private equity firm that invests in DACH based SME companies, and grows enterprises through technology enablement, has closed its second fund with €230m ($258m) in external capital commitments.
Exceeding its original target of €200m ($225m), the fund was significantly oversubscribed at its hard cap, attracting support from both Fund I investors and new institutional investors from Europe and the US. Commitments came from a diverse group of institutional investors, including endowment funds, pension funds, insurance companies and large family offices, as well as entrepreneurs. More than 40% of commitments came from institutional investors in the US.
Newmont announced that the Canadian Competition Bureau issued a “no action” letter clearing Newmont’s previously announced transaction with Newcrest Mining under Canadian competition law. Newmont is progressing towards receiving regulatory approvals in other jurisdictions for a transaction close expected in the fourth quarter.
On May 14, Newmont announced a definitive agreement to acquire Newcrest. The combination would create a world-class portfolio of assets with the highest concentration of Tier 1 operations, primarily in favorable, low-risk mining jurisdictions.
KKR, a global investment firm, agreed to invest $190m in MUSINSA, an online and offline fashion business company, with participation from Wellington Management, an independent investment management firm.
"MUSINSA has developed itself as a top consumer Internet platform in Korea and a differentiated marketplace by its ability to scale rising brands, enable the creator economy for fashion, engage and provide a high-quality e-commerce experience for customers. We see enormous opportunity for MUSINSA to build on its leading position in a fast-growing K-fashion market that continues to shift online and expand globally on the back of K-culture’s explosive reach. We are excited to partner with the management team and look to leverage KKR’s global network, operational expertise, and deep technology experience to take MUSINSA to its next phase of growth,” Mukul Chawla, KKR Partner and Head of Growth Equity, Asia Pacific.
Glow Capital, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire a 51% stake in Cargo Crew, an Australian hospitality uniform brand. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“The partnership with Glow Capital is the next natural step for our business. We have an incredible growth opportunity ahead of us, so we welcome the expertise in scaling up and building a global brand that the Glow team brings,” Felicity Rodgers, Cargo Crew Founder.
Nissan, Renault ready to announce new alliance deal in days.
Nissan and Renault will make an announcement in the coming days on their restructured alliance and have finalised the deal, Reuters reported.
The automakers announced a framework agreement in February and had aimed to finalise negotiations as early as March. Under the framework, the Japanese automaker would take as much as 15% of Renault's new electric vehicle unit, Ampere, while Renault would reduce its 43% stake in Nissan.
Temasek seeks partnerships to deploy $5bn a year in India. (FS)
Singapore’s Temasek is looking for strategic partners as it seeks to deploy between $3bn to $5bn a year in India, betting that the country can become a top driver for growth, Bloomberg reported.
The state investor is planning to hire another four to five investment professionals, bringing its India team to more than 20 people, Temasek India head Ravi Lambah said in an interview. Lambah is also the head of investment group.
Australia's Westpac splits consumer and business banking unit into two. (People)
Westpac Banking said it would split its consumer and business banking business into two, with each having its own CEO, effective August 1.
Chris de Bruin, currently head of the combined unit, will leave and named Jason Yetton as CEO of the consumer business and Anthony Miller as CEO of the business and wealth division, Reuters reported.
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