Centerbridge and Resilient Capital Partners, two private equity firms, announced the recapitalization of Suntex Marinas, the largest standalone, pure-play owner of marinas in the United States. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The marina industry sits at the intersection of two of our high conviction themes–Leisure & Experience and Storage–and we're confident that this investment has the right mix of talent and capital to allow the Company to capitalize on a significant opportunity set," William Rahm, Centerbridge Senior Managing Director and Global Head of Real Estate.
Suntex Marinas is advised by Goldman Sachs, Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom. RCP is advised by Winston & Strawn. Centerbridge is advised by Simpson Thacher & Bartlett. Debt financing is provided by BMO, Harris Bank, BBVA, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, First United Bank & Trust, Gateway First Bank, Iberia Bank, Morgan Stanley, Raymond James, Synovus Bank and Veritex Bank.
GigCapital3, a special purposes acquisition company, agreed to hold a special meeting on April 21, for its shareholders to vote on the $823m SPAC deal with Lightning eMotors, a company that electrifies commercial-vehicle fleets.
“We are thrilled to reach this critical milestone in the merger process, and with approval from GigCapital3 stockholders, look forward to successfully completing the proposed merger, enabling the Lightning eMotors team to continue building the industry leading zero-emission commercial EV company," Raluca Dinu, GigCapital Founding Managing Partner.
Lightning eMotors is advised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, King & Spalding, ICR and Make Ideas Reality. GigCapital3 is advised by Nomura, Oppenheimer & Co, DLA Piper, Mayer Brown and Darrow Associates. Debt financing is provided by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Nomura and Oppenheimer & Co.
Bonanza Creek Energy, an independent energy exploration and production company, and HighPoint Resources, an energy company based in Denver, announced that they expect to close the previously announced merger on April 1, 2021. The closing of the Merger remains subject to the conditions set forth in HighPoint’s prepackaged plan of reorganization.
“We are pleased to announce the closing date of our merger with HighPoint. The structure of the transaction with HighPoint was complex, and I am extremely proud of the work many have done to get this deal closed ahead of schedule,” Eric Greager, HighPoint Resources President and CEO.
HighPoint Resources is advised by AlixPartners, JP Morgan, Perella Weinberg Partners, Tudor Pickering Holt, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld and Kirkland & Ellis. Tudor Pickering Holt is advised by Baker Botts. Bonanza Creek Energy is advised by Evercore, Vinson & Elkins. Evercore is advised by Sidley Austin.
US semi-conductor maker Analog Devices is set to gain unconditional European Union antitrust approval for its proposed $21bn takeover of Maxim Integrated Products. The European Commission is scheduled to decide on the bid by March 31.
The deal will boost Analog Devices' market share in automotive and 5G chipmaking and enable it to better compete with larger firms including Texas Instruments.
Maxim Integrated is advised by JP Morgan and Weil Gotshal and Manges. JP Morgan is advised by Latham & Watkins. Analog Devices is advised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz and Teneo. Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley are advised by Gibson Dunn & Crutcher and Sullivan & Cromwell.
WeWork, an American commercial real estate company, agreed to go public via a SPAC merger with BowX Acquisition, a special purposes acquisition company, in a $9bn deal. WeWork will receive approximately $1.3bn, including a fully committed $800m private placement investment with key investors including Insight Partners, funds managed by Starwood Capital Group, Fidelity Management & Research Company, Centaurus Capital, and BlackRock.
"SoftBank has always seen the potential in WeWork’s core business to disrupt the commercial real estate industry and reimagine the workplace. Today, we take another step towards making that vision a reality. We look forward to having BowX as our partner as we look to the next chapter," Marcelo Claure, WeWork Chairman.
WeWork is advised by PJT Partners, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and Gladstone Place Partners. BowX Acquisition is advised by UBS, Cooley and Paul Hastings. SoftBank is advised by Morrison & Foerster.
AeroFarms, a vertical farming firm, agreed to go public via a SPAC merger with Spring Valley Acquisition, a special purposes acquisition company, in a $1.9bn deal. Upon closing of the transaction, AeroFarms will become publicly traded on Nasdaq under the new ticker symbol "ARFM".
“Our goal was to partner with an industry-leading, best-in-class, sustainability-focused company and we are ecstatic to combine forces with AeroFarms, the market leader in vertical farming, to accomplish this vision. AeroFarms has a technological edge on the industry, developing a world-class innovation team that has fueled a robust and growing intellectual property portfolio of patents and trade secrets. The future is very bright for AeroFarms and we are excited to share this highly compelling ESG investment opportunity by bringing the market leader in the vertical farming industry public," Chris Sorrells, Spring Valley CEO.
AeroFarms is advised by JP Morgan and DLA Piper. Spring Valley is advised by Cowen & Company, Wells Fargo Securities, Kirkland & Ellis, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and ICR.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission has asked Lordstown Motors for information related to its $1.6bn merger with blank-check company DiamondPeak Holdings and preorders of its vehicles.
Lordstown Chief Executive Steve Burns earlier this month said the company had received the SEC request for information with regard to accusations by investment firm Hindenburg Research, but did not disclose details, Reutersreported.
Lordstown Motors is advised by Brown Gibbons Lang & Company, Global M&A Partners, BakerHostetler and Otto & Friends. DiamondPeak is advised by Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, Sullivan & Cromwell and ICR.
Madison Square Garden Entertainment, a media company, agreed to acquire MSG Networks, a sports media company, for c. $900m. Upon the closing of the transaction, MSG Networks stockholders would receive 0.172 shares of MSG Entertainment Class A or Class B common stock for each share of MSG Networks Class A or Class B common stock they own.
This transaction would create a leading entertainment and media company with a more diversified revenue base that would be well positioned to deliver innovative experiences across all of its assets. The combined company would have a stronger liquidity position to support its live entertainment business.
“We anticipate significant benefits from rejoining MSG Entertainment, including creating a combined company with greater diversification and resources. This would, in turn, help drive new innovative opportunities across both the entertainment and media businesses, ultimately creating significant value for our collective shareholders," Andrea Greenberg, MSG Networks President and CEO.
MSG Networks is advised by LionTree Advisors, Morgan Stanley and Davis Polk & Wardwell. MSG Entertainment is advised by Moelis & Co, The Raine Group, Debevoise & Plimpton and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz.
Shareholders of Huntington Bancshares and TCF Financial, have jointly approved the proposed merger of TCF into Huntington at their respective special meetings of shareholders.
"Today's shareholder approval is a key milestone in our journey to combine Huntington and TCF. I am very pleased Huntington shareholders support this partnership, as it provides a compelling opportunity to accelerate shareholder value creation, while enabling us to help more people and businesses throughout our local communities. I look forward to TCF shareholders becoming Huntington shareholders when the transaction is complete," Stephen D. Steinour, Huntington Chairman, President and CEO.
TCF Financial is advised by Keefe Bruyette & Woods, Stifel and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett. Huntington is advised by Goldman Sachs and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz. Goldman Sachs is advised by Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson.
Slate Asset Management, a real estate-focused alternative investment platform, agreed to acquire the commercial real estate business of Annaly Capital, a diversified capital manager, for $2.3bn. Subject to customary closing conditions, including applicable regulatory approvals, the transfer of the commercial real estate business is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2021.
"The acquisition of this platform further expands Slate's core capabilities across the real estate capital stack. Combined with our investment platform, sophistication, institutional relationships and operational expertise, we are uniquely positioned to provide creative debt capital solutions in the current market environment. Additionally, we are very excited to have the ACREG team members join us at Slate," Blair Welch, Slate Co-founding partner.
Slate is advised by BMO Capital Markets, Goodwin Procter and McCarthy Tetrault. Annaly Capital is advised by Evercore, Ropes & Gray and Brunswick Group.
Crestwood Equity, an asset manager, agreed to acquire the remaining stake in the joint venture with First Reserve, a global private equity investment firm, for $268m.
“Crestwood has established a track record of solid execution, disciplined capital allocation and a commitment to embracing a best-in-class MLP sustainability program. Today’s announcements are the next logical steps in our strategy to drive peer leading governance and set the stage for future growth by simplifying our organizational structure, increasing our public float and liquidity, and enhancing our financial flexibility as we strive to generate long-term value for our unitholders,” Robert G. Phillips, Crestwood Equity Chairman, President and CEO.
Crestwood is advised by Citigroup, Evercore, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, Hunton Andrews Kurth and Vinson & Elkins. Evercore is advised by Baker Botts.
Thomas H. Lee Partners, a private equity firm, agreed to invest in Bazaarvoice, a software developer. Marlin Equity Partners, the current majority investor in Bazaarvoice, will continue to be a material shareholder. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Consumers value the voices of other consumers in their shopping journeys, and Bazaarvoice offers marketers a mission-critical set of solutions to help acquire, curate and deliver UGC at scale to their customers. THL is excited to support Bazaarvoice in continuously growing and innovating its software and content offerings to help brands and retailers drive e-commerce revenue," Jeff Swenson, THL Managing Director.
Bazaarvoice is advised by UBS and Latham & Watkins. Marlin Equity is advised by JP Morgan. Thomas H. Lee is advised by Barclays and Kirkland & Ellis.
US antitrust regulators are taking a closer look at UnitedHealth Group’s proposed $7.8bn deal to acquire data and payments company Change Healthcare.
Officials from the Department of Justice asked both companies for more information about the transaction. The so-called second request gives regulators more time to review the takeover beyond a standard 30-day period, Bloombergreported.
Change Healthcare is advised by Barclays, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Brunswick Group. UnitedHealth is advised by Sullivan & Cromwell.
Roy Kapani, a billionaire businessman, completed the acquisition of Systems Engineering Associates, a provider of engineering services and technology to the United States Navy. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“The SEACORP team is thrilled to partner with Roy and his team given their respect for our culture, experience in our markets, and a shared vision on how we can continue to grow our company. This partnership will allow us to further build our brand, broaden our portfolio of capabilities and expand into new customer segments by investing in the business, both organically and with strategic acquisitions," Dave Lussier, SEACORP President.
SEACORP was advised by Houlihan Lokey and Duffy & Sweeney. Roy Kapani was advised by PilieroMazza and Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom.
Shareholders of both Virginia National Bankshares, the parent holding company of Virginia National Bank, and Fauquier Bankshares, the parent holding company of The Fauquier Bank, approved the previously announced merger. The parties expect the merger to be effective on April 1, 2021. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Based on financial information as of December 31, 2020, the combined company would have c.$1.7bn in assets, $1.5bn in deposits, $1.2bn in loans and $1.1bn in assets under management. Fauquier Bankshares reported a $5.9m profit last year. It ended 2020 with total assets of $867.1m and shareholders’ equity of $72.5m.
"The enhanced scale and complementary business lines resulting from this transaction provides the best opportunity for both banks to better serve our major constituencies: our clients, our employees, our shareholders and our communities. We are committed to using the best practices of both companies to increase our market share across Virginia," Marc J. Bogan, The Fauquier Bank President and CEO.
Fauquier is advised by Troutman Pepper and Piper Sandler. Virginia National is advised by Performance Trust Capital Partners and Williams Mullen.
Accel-KKR, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire Navis, a provider of operational technologies and services, from Cargotec, a Finnish company that makes cargo-handling machinery for ships, ports, terminals and local distribution, for $448m.
"We are pleased to have reached this agreement that delivers a great home for Navis and maximises value for our stakeholders. The transaction will secure the best possible growth and value creation for the next development phase for Navis," Mika Vehviläinen, Cargotec CEO.
Navis is advised by Affect. Cargotec is advised by Citigroup and Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren.
Capstone Mining, a Canadian base metals mining company, agreed to acquire a 30% stake in Santo Domingo project from Korea Resources, mineral resources development, mineral information service and mineral research corporation, for $120m in three cash payments over the next four years including an initial payment of $30m.
“The gold stream and port agreements are key steps in our reduced capital strategy which aims to decrease the capital required by a target of $700m. The consolidation of 100% ownership of the project allows Capstone to efficiently engage in discussions with potential strategic partners. KORES is a large shareholder and they believe the company is at the forefront of significant copper growth,” Darren Pylot, Capstone President and CEO.
Capstone is advised by GenCap Mining Advisory. Korea Resources is advised by Blake Cassels & Graydon and Citigroup.
Britain’s competition watchdog gave Facebook and Giphy five working days to offer proposals to address its concerns over their merger deal, which could affect digital advertising and the supply of animated images, Reuters reported.
The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority began an initial investigation in January at a time when the US-based social media network firm was under global regulatory scrutiny over antitrust concerns. It found that Giphy, once a rival to Facebook in digit ads through paid sponsorships outside the UK, had plans to expand sponsorship deals to other countries, including the UK.
Giphy is advised by JP Morgan and Gunderson Dettmer Stough Villeneuve Franklin & Hachigian. Facebook is advised by Latham & Watkins.
Capital D, a pan-European private equity fund manager, completed the acquisition of a majority stake in Qmee, a software developer. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"With its cutting-edge tech, Qmee is a business operating at exactly this intersection within the research and consumer insight ecosystem. Qmee fits well with our strategy of backing growing and profitable disruptive companies where we become the first reference shareholder alongside a founding management team. Qmee’s ability to offer businesses access to efficient, low cost, genuine first-party data is becoming increasingly important as brands yearn to stay connected with their customers. We are very proud to become Qmee’s partner for the next phase of its development," Jean-Marc Jabre, Capital D Co-Founder.
Qmee was advised by Squire Patton Boggs. Capital D was advised by Deloitte and PriestleySoundy.
Glatfelter, a global supplier of engineered materials, announced the antitrust regulatory process has concluded and it may now proceed with the previously announced acquisition of Georgia-Pacific’s US nonwovens business for $175m. The transaction includes Georgia-Pacific’s Mount Holly, North Carolina airlaid manufacturing operation and an R&D center for nonwovens product development in Memphis, Tennessee, which collectively employ approximately 140 people. The transaction is expected to close by May 31, 2021 after all other customary closing conditions have been met. Glatfelter intends to finance the acquisition through a combination of cash on hand and borrowings under its existing revolving credit facility.
“The Mount Holly facility, along with the Memphis R&D center, are excellent complements to Glatfelter’s existing business and are important to our ongoing transformation. This transaction will further position us to better serve our customers and provide immediate financial benefit, building on the Company’s strong results in 2020,” Dante C. Parrini, Glatfelter Chairman and CEO.
Glatfelter is advised by Credit Suisse and Shearman & Sterling.
Sodiaal, a France's dairy cooperative, agreed to acquire Yoplait Canada and the 51% stake in Yoplait, the world's largest franchise brand of yogurt, from General Mills, a global food company. The proposed transaction is expected to close by the end of calendar 2021, subject to appropriate labor consultations, regulatory filings, and other customary closing conditions. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“The brand with the little flower, a true national heritage brand, is the pride of our cooperators and employees. It would help secure the collection of milk from our members in the long term. This operation would be carried out in accordance with the values which drive the members of our cooperative: solidarity, innovation, dynamics of agricultural territories, environmental and social responsibility ” Damien Lacombe, Sodiaal Chairman.
Sodiaal is advised by Rothschild & Co. General Mills is advised by Morgan Stanley.
Tiger Global and Sequoia, two venture capital firms, led a $500m financing round in ServiceTitan, a provider of software for the trades. Existing investors participated, including Arena, Battery Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, Dragoneer Investment Group, Durable Capital, ICONIQ, Index Ventures, and funds and accounts advised by T. Rowe Price Associates.
"By providing contractors with the tools they need to deliver a great customer experience and grow their businesses with ease, ServiceTitan is enabling the hardworking men and women of the trades to reach the level of success they deserve," Ara Mahdessian, ServiceTitan Co-founder and CEO.
SoftBank Ventures Asia-backed Iyuno Media, an entertainment technology and localization company, completed the acquisition of SDI Media, a provider of dubbing, subtitling, and media services. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The accelerating changes in the world are creating the need for more content that reaches audiences in every corner of the world. We know that we must accelerate our technical innovation through advances in AI, workflow automation, machine translation and global technology infrastructures," David Lee, Iyuno-SDI Group CEO.
EssilorLuxottica, a global company in the design, manufacture and distribution of ophthalmic lenses, frames and sunglasses, agreed to acquire Walman Optical, the US based lens-finishing labs network. The transaction is expected to close in the coming months pending regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Walman is a company we’ve admired as a longtime partner - they share EssilorLuxottica’s customer-first sensibility and our relentless pursuit of higher service standards. They also share our history of employee shareholding, which makes them an ideal cultural fit for our family. Walman has cultivated broad recognition and relationship equity and we will invest in the areas that make them such a great partner to the industry,” Francesco Milleri and Paul du Saillant, EssilorLuxottica CEO and Deputy CEO.
Fiserv, a global provider of payments and financial services technology solutions, agreed to acquire Pineapple Payments, a payment processing, proprietary technology and omni-channel payment acceptance solutions provider. The transaction is subject to customary approvals and closing conditions and is expected to close in the second quarter of 2021. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“With Pineapple Payments already operating as a key distribution partner of Fiserv, we expect to accelerate the delivery of new and innovative capabilities to a host of new merchant clients. Together, we will provide omni-channel payments technology and services to enable merchants to maximize the potential of electronic payment processing. We look forward to welcoming Pineapple Payments to the Fiserv family and continuing to provide the best-in-class solutions and service that merchants and their customers expect,” Frank Bisignano, Fiserv President and CEO.
Banco Santander, a Spanish multinational financial services company, offered to acquire the remaining 8.3% stake in Santander Mexico, a Mexican subsidiary of Santander, for $648m.
Santander’s offer is comfortably above the unit’s share price over the past year, though still below pre-pandemic levels and 22% lower than where it was when the Spanish lender first sought full ownership of its Mexican business in 2019. With full control of Santander Mexico, the Spanish bank will increase its exposure to a region that has structural growth and high and increasing profitability.
Private equity firm Woven Capital and Chipotle, a fast food restaurant chain, agreed join the T. Rowe Price-led $500m Series C funding round in Nuro, a robotics company transforming local commerce through autonomous delivery. Other investors include Fidelity Management & Research Company, Baillie Gifford, SoftBank Vision Fund and Greylock.
"We are witnessing an unprecedented shift in consumer demand for safe and affordable local delivery services. This funding, which brings us together with many of the world’s top investors, positions Nuro confidently toward a future where our world-class technology is adopted into people’s everyday lives," Jiajun Zhu, Nuro CEO and Co-Founder.
Go Global Retail, a brand investment platform, agreed to acquire Janie and Jack, a provider of premium children's fashion products, from Gap, a collection of lifestyle brands. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Our team of experienced retail and brand practitioners will complement the existing dynamic management team in areas of digital strategy, international business development, supply chain and global operations," Christian Feuer, Go Global Managing Director.
UiPath files for an IPO to go public at the $35bn value.
UiPath, a software maker valued at $35bn after a funding round this year, filed for an initial public offering showing revenue increased 81% year over year, Bloomberg reported.
The company in a filing listed the size of its IPO as $1bn, a placeholder that could change when it sets terms for the share sale.
UiPath specializes in robotic process automation technology, software that helps companies save time and money by automating repetitive, manual tasks such as entering data into spreadsheets. It competes with Automation Anywhere, which is backed by SoftBank Group.
US regulator opens inquiry into Wall Street's blank check IPO frenzy.
The US securities regulator has opened an inquiry into Wall Street’s blank check acquisition frenzy and is seeking information on how underwriters are managing the risks involved, Reutersreported.
The US SEC in recent days sent letters to Wall Street banks seeking information on their SPAC dealings.
The SEC has previously said it was monitoring the SPAC boom, but the letters are the strongest sign yet that it is stepping up scrutiny of such deals and the Wall Street banks that underwrite them.
Goldman sold $10.5bn of stocks in a block-trade spree. (FS)
Goldman Sachs liquidated $10.5bn worth of stocks in block trades, part of an extraordinary spree of selling that erased $35bn from the values of bellwether stocks ranging from Chinese technology giants to US media conglomerates, Bloombergreported.
The Wall Street bank sold $6.6bn worth of shares of Baidu, Tencent Music Entertainment and Vipshop Holdings before the market opened in the US.
That move was followed by the sale of $3.9bn of shares in ViacomCBS, Discovery, Farfetch, iQiyi and GSX Techedu.
Reservoir Media in talks to go public via Roth II SPAC.
Music publisher Reservoir Media Management is in talks to go public through a merger with Roth Ch Acquisition II, a blank-check firm, Bloombergreported.
A merger between Roth and New York-based Reservoir, founded by Golnar Khosrowshahi, would value the combined entity at more than $700m.
Roth said in a filing last month that on February 15 it entered a mutually exclusive non-binding letter of intent with a target company, without naming it.
VIZIO valued at $3.2bn after opening 17% lower in NYSE debut.
VIZIO, a television maker, was valued at $3.21bn in its market debut, after the firms’ shares opened almost 17% below their offer price.
The stock opened at $17.5 per share compared with the offer price of $21 per share in VIZIO’s downsized IPO of 12.25m shares earlier. The company, which raised around $257m in the IPO, had said it would sell 15.12m shares, along with selling stockholders, priced between $21 and $23 apiece, Reutersreported.
VIZIO, which makes televisions and speakers, was founded in 2002 by William Wang, one of the survivors of the Singapore Airlines Flight 006 that crashed in 2000.
ACV Auctions eyes $364m IPO.
Auto marketplace ACV Auctions said it was looking to raise up to $364m in its IPO in the United States, after raising its offer price range.
The company, also backed by investment firm Bessemer Venture Partners, said it was looking to sell 16.55m shares at a price range of $20 to $22 per share. Earlier, it had aimed to sell the shares at $18 to $20 apiece, Reutersreported.
Adrian Cheng’s SPAC is poised to raise up to $345m in NY listing. (FS)
Adrian Cheng Chi-kong, the third-generation scion of one of Hong Kong’s wealthiest families and largest conglomerates, is poised to list a SPAC in New York, joining the hottest fad to grip the global capital markets.
The blank cheque company, Artisan Acquisition, will raise up to $345m in an IPO on Nasdaq. The transaction is being sponsored by one of Cheng’s companies, Artisan.
Aspex Master Fund, a Hong Kong private investment fund, and Pacific Alliance Asia Opportunity Fund, a Hong Kong private-equity fund, are acting as anchor investors for the transaction, investing a combined $60m.
Edward Horowitz's space-focused SPAC to raise $250m.
CEA Space Partners I, a blank check company led by satellite industry veteran Edward Horowitz, plans to raise $250m in a public stock offering to buy a space business.
“While we may pursue an acquisition opportunity in any industry or sector, we intend to focus our search on companies within the space economy and adjacent verticals with enterprise values of at least $1bn. This may include but are not limited to satellite equipment and components, satellite communications services, earth observation technology, satellite launch technology, data collection tools and analytics, space logistics, robotics, and related services,” CEA Space Partners.
ThredUP raises $168m in IPO.
ThredUp, an online marketplace for secondhand clothing, raised $168m in an initial public offering priced at the top of a marketed range, Bloombergreported.
The Oakland, California-based company sold 12m shares for $14 each after marketing them for $12 to $14. ThredUp has a market value of $1.27 billion based on the outstanding shares listed in its filings.
“More millennial and generation Z consumers are driving the shift to secondhand each year,” ThredUp.
TuSimple files to go public.
TuSimple, the self-driving truck company that is backed by a diverse consortium of strategic investors, including Volkswagen’s heavy-truck business The Traton Group, Navistar, Goodyear, and freight company USXpress, TechCrunch reported.
TuSimple is taking the traditional path to going public, a departure from the recent trend - particularly among electric and autonomous vehicle startups - to merge with a SPACs.
The number of shares to be offered and the price range for the proposed offering have not yet been determined. TuSimple intends to list its common stock on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the ticker symbol “TSP.”
Morgan Stanley, Citigroup and JP Morgan are the lead underwriters for the proposed offering.
Sun Capital looks to raise $2.5bn for the eighth fund. (FS)
Sun Capital Partners is seeking some $2.5bn for its eighth flagship fund, as the private equity firm seeks to continue growing its technology and healthcare portfolios,PE News reported.
At about $2.5bn, the Florida-based firm’s new fund would be roughly $200m larger than its predecessor, Sun Capital Partners VII, which closed on $2.3bn in 2019.
Sun Capital has raised approximately $13bn through seven flagship buyout funds and has invested in over 420 portfolio companies worldwide with revenues in excess of $50bn across a wide range of industries, including business services, technology and healthcare.
Fulcrum Equity Partners closes oversubscribed Growth Fund IV at $275m. (FS)
Fulcrum Equity Partners, a growth equity firm investing in healthcare services, HCIT, B2B SaaS, and tech-enabled services, has closed its fourth and largest fund to date, Fulcrum Growth Fund IV, which was oversubscribed with $275m in committed capital.
Fulcrum’s existing investor base validated the firm’s thesis and approach with nearly 100% participation from institutional investors in prior funds and many investors increasing their allocations over previous commitments. New institutional investors and family offices also joined the firm’s longtime stable of C-level executives – a key element of Fulcrum’s strategic value-add since its founding in 2006.
“As a team of seasoned entrepreneurs ourselves, we started the firm’s first fund by gaining the financial and operational support of like-minded executives who continue to invest and serve as a rich resource in diligence, market knowledge, connections, and board composition for our portfolio companies,” Tom Greer, Fulcrum Founding Partner.
Leon Black is stepping down from his role as Apollo Global chairman.(FS, People)
Leon Black, who stepped down this month from Apollo Global Management after more than a year of intense scrutiny of his ties to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, is preparing to let go of another prestigious title as he retreats from the glare of public life, Bloombergreported.
Black, 69, has indicated he won’t stand for re-election as chairman of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The billionaire told the board’s executive committee.
His withdrawal comes after months of pressure brought on by Black’s relationship with Epstein- which at the museum had artists Ai Weiwei, Nan Goldin and others calling for Black’s removal.
French water company Veolia is seeking EU antitrust approval to vote at takeover target Suez’s upcoming shareholder meeting on resolutions that could include deposing Suez board members. Veolia also wants to be able to vote on any shareholder resolution to remove a foundation Suez has set up to ringfence its French water operations, forming an obstacle to a takeover, and to oppose Suez asset sale, Reutersreported.
Veolia is Suez’s top stakeholder with 29.9% and has launched a $13.21bn bid for the firm, but under EU merger rules it cannot exercise control or influence over its target until the deal is cleared by regulators. It will require special approval to use its vote to back some resolutions, and has begun talks with Brussels to determine what areas it might be able to vote on.
Suez Group is advised by Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Rothschild & Co, Societe Generale, Bredin Prat, Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier, Sullivan & Cromwell and Brunswick Group. Ardian is advised by Linklaters and Headland Consultancy. Veolia is advised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, Credit Agricole, HSBC, Messier Maris & Associes, Morgan Stanley, Perella Weinberg Partners, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, Flichy Grange Avocats, Gide Loyrette Nouel, Hogan Lovells, Patrice Gassenbach, Peltier Juvigny Marpeau & Associes, Xavier Boucobza and Image Sept. Engie is advised by BNP Paribas, Centerview Partners, Credit Suisse, Lazard, d'Angelin & Co, Weil Gotshal and Manges, Estudio de Comunicacion and Havas Paris.
London Stock Exchange Group tapped the US high-grade bond market for $4.5bn to help refinance debt it took on related to its acquisition of Refinitiv Holdings, Bloombergreported.
The company sold bonds in five parts. The longest portion of the offering, a 20-year security, will yield 100 basis points over Treasuries. The exchange will use the funds to refinance debt incurred in connection with its $27bn purchase of Refinitiv that was completed earlier this year. It also plans to offer bonds in euros and sterling in its first foray into international debt markets since 2018. Barclays, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo Securities are managing the bond sale.
Refinitiv was advised by Canson Capital Partners, Evercore, Jefferies & Company, Corrs Chambers Westgarth, Osler Hoskin & Harcourt, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Eterna Partners. LSEG was advised by RBC Capital Markets, Oliver Wyman, Barclays, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Robey Warshaw, Blake Cassels & Graydon, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Teneo. Financial advisors were advised by Herbert Smith Freehills. CPPIB was advised by Weil Gotshal and Manges. Thomson Reuters was advised by Allen & Overy.
Foley Trasimene Acquisition II , a SPAC, announced that at the special meeting of Foley Trasimene stockholders, Foley Trasimene’s stockholders voted in favor of the proposed business combination with Paysafe Group. The completion of the business combination is expected to occur on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, subject to the satisfaction or waiver of customary closing conditions. Following the completion of the business cCombination, the newly combined company will operate as Paysafe and trade on the NYSE under the symbol “PSFE” and is expected to start trading on March 31.
Paysafe Group is advised by Latham & Watkins, Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley, Proton Partners, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and ICR. Foley Trasimene Acquisition II is advised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, JP Morgan, RBC Capital Markets, Weil Gotshal and Manges and Solebury Trout.
Nova Resources, led by KAZ Minerals chairman Oleg Novachuk and Kazakh billionaire Vladimir Kim, has increased its bid by 9% to $5.5bn for the copper miner KAZ Minerals. The revised bid comes after minority shareholders indicated they would reject earlier proposals for being too low.
This is the second increase to the original October offer by the group, after minority shareholders including RWC Partners and Russia-based CFC Management, indicated they would vote against the proposals because of a strong rise in copper prices.
KAZ Minerals is advised by Citigroup, UBS, Linklaters and Brunswick Group. Nova Resources is advised by VTB Capital and Clifford Chance. VTB Capital is advised by Latham & Watkins and Macfarlanes. Debt financing is provided by VTB Capital.
PPG Industries, a supplier of paints, coatings and specialty materials, announced that it is extending the tender offer period for all issued and outstanding shares of Tikkurila, a manufacturer of paints and lacquers, to April 14, 2021. The tender offer period, which commenced on January 15, 2021, was scheduled to expire on March 30, 2021.
The European Commission and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment of Finland each have granted approval of the tender offer. The European Commission’s merger control approval applies without conditions across the European Union, including Poland. The offer remains subject to the receipt of other regulatory approvals outside of the European Union, which PPG anticipates receiving within this extended period, and to additional customary conditions to completion, including the valid tender of shares representing, together with shares otherwise held by PPG and its subsidiaries, more than 66.7% of the outstanding shares.
Tikkurila is advised by SEB Corporate Finance and Hannes Snellman. PPG is advised by D.F. King & Co, Danske Bank, PJT Partners, DLA Piper and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz.
CVC Capital, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire a 90% stake in Ethniki Insurance, an insurance brokerage services provider, from National Bank of Greece, a banking and financial services company, for $536m.
The closing is subject to standard conditions precedent, the approval by the antitrust and regulatory authorities and the approval of an extraordinary general meeting of NBG shareholders.
CVC Capital is advised by Boston Consulting Group, Deutsche Bank, Bernitsas Law and Latham & Watkins.
Allianz, an insurer and asset manager, agreed to acquire Aviva Poland, comprising Aviva’s interests in life insurance business in Poland and Lithuania, and its Polish general insurance, asset management and pensions businesses, including a portfolio of financial advice, digital distribution, and price comparison businesses, for $2.94bn.
"By combining our insurance and digital expertise and strong investments in technological innovation, customers will benefit from our innovative products and outstanding services," Oliver Baete, Allianz CEO.
Aviva Poland is advised by ZOOM bsc. Allianz is advised by Greenberg Traurig. Aviva is advised by JP Morgan.
Euroclear, a financial services company, agreed to acquire MFEX Mutual Funds Exchange, an expert in global fund distribution, from Nordic Capital, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Over the past years, we have together with Nordic Capital invested in our platform and continued to transform the fund distribution proposition. Euroclear is a great strategic fit for the next stage of our journey. By adding our respective strengths, we will be able to build an even better and stronger solution for fund distribution," Jean Devambez, MFEX CEO.
Euroclear is advised by JP Morgan. Nordic Capital is advised by Cederquist.
Lonsdale Capital Partners, a private equity firm, agreed to acquire a majority stake in Horseware Ireland, a manufacturer of equine products. Financial terms were not disclosed.
With Lonsdale’s support, Horseware will continue to focus on bringing high quality and innovative equine products to market and further expanding its international footprint.
“We have long admired the achievements and success of Horseware which has a unique heritage and a justifiable reputation for high performance equestrian products. I am delighted that Lonsdale can support the further growth and development of this impressive company," Ross Finegan, Lonsdale Partner.
Lonsdale Capital is advised by Burness Paull and Ronan Daly Jermyn.
The competition watchdog has provisionally blocked the planned £140m merger between Seedrs and Crowdcube over concerns it would lead to less choice and higher fees.
The two crowdfunding platforms announced plans to merge in October, saying the deal would create one of the world’s largest private equity marketplaces.
“We have therefore reached the view that blocking this merger is likely to be the best way to maintain competition. The decision to block any deal is not taken lightly and is only made if there is a real risk of customers losing out,” Kirstin Baker, CMA inquiry group chair.
Octopus Energy Group, an energy supplier, agreed to acquire Octopus Renewables, a clean energy investor. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“This move will allow us to create a business that is unrivalled on the global stage. By combining our tech and consumer-led approach with the fund management expertise of Octopus Renewables, we can change the entire energy lifecycle, make every green electron matter, and deliver the green energy transition faster and cheaper for everyone," Greg Jackson, Octopus Energy CEO.
CDP-led consortium to up offer for Autostrade, valuing the company at more than €9.5bn. (FS)
A consortium led by Italy’s state-lender Cassa Depositi e Prestiti is set to raise its offer for Atlantia’s motorway unit Autostrade per l’Italia to value all of the company at more than €9.5bn ($11.19bn), Reutersreported.
Atlantia’s key investors said the bid expected by Saturday from Italian state lender CDP and its partners appeared to be the best option for the sale of the group’s motorway unit Autostrade per l’Italia.
Trade union calls for Deliveroo UK riders strike to highlight IPO risks.
A trade union called for Deliveroo’s UK riders to strike when the meal delivery service floats on the stock market next month, saying the action would highlight dissatisfaction with the company’s business model and approach to workers’ rights, Reutersreported.
Deliveroo, whose turquoise-uniformed couriers delivering chicken kormas and American hot pizzas are a common sight in many British suburbs, is set for Britain’s biggest stock market debut in nearly a decade after setting a share price range that values it at up to $12bn.
But some investment firms have said they will not participate in the IPO. Insurer Aviva for instance highlighted a lack of rights for riders as an investment risk as the company might be forced to change its business model.
ABB plans $4.3bn share buyback from April.
Swiss engineering company ABB said it will launch a share buyback worth around $4.3bn as it seeks to return proceeds from the sale of 80% of its Power Grids unit to Japan’s Hitachi, Reutersreported.
ABB, which makes industrial robots and drives, had previously completed a $3.5bn share buyback. Since the Power Grids disposal last year, ABB has said it is looking to sell off three of its other businesses as it seeks to become a less-complicated company.
“The Board confirms ABB’s intention to return $7.8bn of cash proceeds from the Power Grids divestment to shareholders through share buybacks. The program is expected to be launched in April 2021,” ABB.
Partners, PSP explore a sale of $3.5bn Cerba Healthcare. (FS)
Partners Group and Canada’s Public Sector Pension Investment Board are considering options for French laboratories firm Cerba HealthCare, including a potential sale, Bloombergreported.
The owners are speaking with advisers about options for the business, which could be valued at about €3bn ($3.5bn). A formal sale process could begin in the coming weeks and draw interest from financial and strategic buyers. Deliberations are ongoing and the owners could still decide against a sale.
Demand for hospital and laboratory assets has increased amid the Covid-19 crisis and a sale of Cerba could rank among the largest deals in the sector in Europe this year.
Aciturri plots a £1.5bn bid for Rolls-Royce wing ITP Aero.
Rolls-Royce is in talks with a Spanish-based aerospace group about the sale of one of its largest subsidiaries as it seeks to prevent sell-offs aimed at shoring up its balance sheet being further grounded by protectionist sentiment, Sky News reported.
Aciturri Aeronautica has emerged as one of the main contenders to acquire ITP Aero, a Basque region-headquartered arm of Rolls-Royce which makes aircraft engines and turbines.
Warren East, Rolls-Royce's chief executive, has set a £2bn ($2.7bn) target for asset sale proceeds following the most turbulent year in the company's history.
Former Premier Foods boss in talks about £1.5bn bid for Kettle-owner Valeo. (FS)
A former chief executive of Premier Foods is in talks about a £1.5bn ($2bn) takeover bid for the branded grocery group which owns Kettle crisps and Rowse honey, Sky News reported.
Gavin Darby, who left the Mr Kipling-maker in 2019, is working with the private equity firm Cinven on an offer for Valeo. The talks are at an early stage, and are part of an auction of Valeo which has been kicked off by its current owner, CapVest. Mr Darby ran Premier Foods, which also makes Bisto and Angel Delight, for six years.
His work with Cinven, which could see him become Valeo's chairman if its bid succeeds, underlines the seriousness with which the buyout firm approaches the situation.
BC Partners plans a $1.8bn sale of Aenova. (FS)
BC Partners is considering a sale of German pharmaceutical contract manufacturer Aenova, Bloombergreported.
The private equity firm plans to seek a valuation of more than €1.5bn ($1.8bn) for the business. BC Partners is working with Rothschild & Co to gauge interest in Aenova, which could draw interest from buyout firms and other strategic bidders.
Aenova provides product development and manufacturing services to pharmaceutical and consumer health care companies in 15 countries including Germany, Switzerland and Italy. It reported revenue of €726m ($858m) and a net loss of €53m ($62.7m) in 2019. BC Partners acquired the business in 2012 in a €480m ($649m) deal.
EQT, Chesapeake are among suitors for Alta Resources. (FS)
Alta Resources, a closely held natural gas explorer, has drawn interest from potential buyers including EQT and Chesapeake Energy.
EQT and Chesapeake are weighing offers for Houston-based Alta that could value the company at more than $3bn. Alta, whose backers include the Blackstone Group's credit arm, is working with an adviser on a potential sale.
The sale comes as the fragmented natural gas industry looks to consolidate amid depressed prices and investor calls to improve cash flows and returns. Merging with peers makes sense, EQT Chief Executive Officer Toby Rice told Bloombergin November, after his company agreed to buy Chevron’s Appalachian assets for $735m.
SocGen in talks with Amundi and State Street to sell Lyxor asset management unit.
Societe Generale, a French multinational investment bank, is in advanced talks with Amundi, a French asset management company, and State Street, an American financial services and bank holding company, to sell its Lyxor asset management unit as part of efforts to boost profitability, Reutersreported.
Amundi and State Street are finalising rival bids for the French bank’s fund business after other interested parties dropped out over its valuation.
Lyxor is being valued at about half the $1.2bn it was targeting, with bidders only willing to offer about $472m-$590m due to growth challenges and fallout from the coronavirus crisis.
Renishaw attracts takeover Interest from Danaher, Hexagon.
Renishaw, the British engineering firm exploring a sale, is attracting initial interest from Danaher as well as Swedish rival Hexagon, Bloombergreported.
Danaher, the $159bn medical equipment maker, is considering teaming up with Fortive, the industrial company it spun off in 2016, to bid for Renishaw and then split up the business. Renishaw may also approach rival engineering and precision measurement companies such as AMETEK, Mettler-Toledo International, Japan’s KEYENCE and France’s Schneider Electric.
A small number of private equity firms have separately shown interest. Renishaw is working with adviser UBS on the process.
Chevron eyes deal for Shell oil refinery.
Chevron has emerged as a leading contender to buy a Royal Dutch Shell refinery in the US Pacific Northwest, Reutersreported.
Shell has been trying to sell its 145k barrel-per-day Puget Sound refinery in Anacortes, Washington, for at least a year. The refinery was for sale in January 2020.
“As a matter of policy we don’t comment on market rumors or speculation,” Braden Reddall, Chevron spokesman.
Axios and Athletic discuss the merger.
Axios and The Athletic have held serious discussions in recent days about a merger of their digital operations.
A part of the talks is said to include a scenario in which the companies would anchor a portfolio of digital brands. That entity would then seek to go public via a SPAC, a popular investment vehicle, WSJreported.
Both organizations have gained prominence a few short years after their founding, but via distinctly different routes.
Schufa owners explore a sale.
Schufa, the German equivalent to the FICO credit score firm in the the US, is exploring a sale, Bloombergreported.
The company’s owners, which include Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank, have already held talks with private equity suitors EQT and Hellman & Friedman about a potential deal. Schufa could be valued at more than €2bn ($2.3bn) in any sale.
Discussions about a sale were triggered by an initial approach from EQT. Some of Schufa’s owners have in the past held talks with potential buyers, to no avail.
GFG asks ministers for a £170m bailout.
Britain's third-biggest steel producer has asked ministers to approve an emergency bailout of as much as £170m ($273m) as it teeters on the brink of collapse, Sky News reported.
GFG Alliance, the conglomerate headed by Sanjeev Gupta, wrote to the government late this week to request the emergency funding with thousands of jobs hanging in the balance.
The letter from Mr Gupta follows weeks of speculation about the future of GFG, which owns Liberty Steel, the employer of 3k people across Britain. GFG employs a further 2k in the UK across other divisions of his empire, which includes Alvance, a global aluminium business, and Simec, a renewable energy operation.
Cazoo eyes SPAC deal at a $7bn valuation.
Second-hand car seller Cazoo is finalizing the details of a merger with Ajax I, a SPAC, that would see it go public with a valuation of about $7bn, Bloombergreported.
The deal could be announced as soon as Monday. The company expected to raise about $800m through a private investment in public equity.
Cazoo buys and restores cars before selling them online, delivering directly to customers’ homes, and has generated revenue of more than £200m ($274m) since it launched in 2019.
Bain-owned Diversey falls 10% in market debut, valued at $4.1bn. (FS)
Shares of Bain Capital-owned Diversey fell more than 10% in their stock market debut, fetching a valuation of $4.1bn for the provider of cleaning and hygiene products, Reutersreported.
Diversey’s stock opened at $13.5 on the Nasdaq, below its IPO price of $15 per share. The company raised $692m from its offering of about 46.2m shares. It had initially aimed for a price between $18 and $21 per share for its offering.
Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Barclays and JP Morgan are the lead underwriters for Diversey’s offering.
Allfunds targets post-Easter launch of Amsterdam IPO. (FS)
Madrid-based fund-distribution firm Allfunds plans to list on Euronext Amsterdam in April, in what could be Europe’s largest initial public offering of a financial services group in 2021, Reutersreported.
The wealth-tech company, jointly owned by private equity fund Hellman & Friedman, Singapore’s sovereign fund GIC and lenders BNP Paribas and Credit Suisse, is planning to announce its intention to float after Easter.
Trading could start later in April or early May, adding that Allfunds could be valued at €7-8bn ($8.2-9.4bn) on the stock market.
Paris to get its first tech SPAC with 360 Disruptech listing. (FS)
Paris is set to get its first blank-check company for technology investments, the latest sign European investors are joining the US investment craze, Bloombergreported.
360 Disruptech EU is looking to raise €250m ($295m) in a private placement before its shares start trading in early May. It plans to sell as many as 25m units, each consisting of one share and one warrant, at €10 ($13) per unit. Four warrants will give access to 1 share after the acquisition.
The newly listed company will look for European technology companies with an equity value of €1bn ($1.35bn) to €4bn ($5.4bn). The SPAC is being formed by venture capital firm 360 Capital Partners, which was an early investor in fashion retailer Yoox and Withings, the connected device company acquired by Nokia. 360 Capital will continue to manage its own investments and will help the new company with due diligence.
Green Minerals IPO taps rising interest in the deep sea.
Rising investor demand for ethically-sourced battery metals opened the window this week for Norwegian seafarers to become the first deep-sea mining stock publicly offered.
Norway’s Green Minerals says it will be able to exploit the cobalt and copper needed by electric vehicles without inflicting damages on people and the environment. Most current production comes from loosely-regulated mines in Democratic Republic of Congo. Green Minerals joins a growing list of companies that want to clean up supply chains by mining the deep sea, Bloombergreported.
“There isn’t as much conversation in the green community about what comes before the final product, the resources required for batteries, panels and windmills,” Staale Rodahl, Green Minerals Chairman.
Credit Suisse hires BAML’s leveraged finance capital markets boss. (People)
Credit Suisse has hired the former head of Bank of America Merrill Lynch's leveraged finance capital markets business in Europe as the Swiss bank continues to bolster the division in London.
Joe Bishay, whose departure from Bank of America Merrill Lynch spurred a shake-up at its European leveraged finance unit, has joined Credit Suisse as a managing director and senior member of its syndicate team, FNreported.
Wise Road Capital, a private equity firm, agreed to take Magnachip Semiconductor, the South Korean display and power solutions provider, private in a $1.4bn deal. The transaction is expected to close during the second half of 2021, subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of shareholder and regulatory approvals.
"Given their deep industry expertise, Wise Road Capital is an ideal partner for Magnachip, and we look forward to working with them as we chart the next phase for our company. We remain grateful to our customers for their trust and to our fellow employees for their unwavering commitment to delivering industry-leading products to customers worldwide," YJ Kim, Magnachip CEO.
Megachip is advised by JP Morgan, Kim & Chang, Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison, Richards Layton and Finger, Allison+Partners and Sloane & Company. Wise Road is advised by BMO Capital Markets, Hogan Lovells and Lee & Ko. JP Morgan is advised by Debevoise & Plimpton.
Cboe Global Markets, an exchange holding company, agreed to acquire Chi-X Asia Pacific Holdings, an operator of exchange holdings in Australia and Japan, from J.C. Flowers, a private equity firm. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"In the course of this investment, J.C. Flowers deployed capital, technology, and human resources to create significant market positions in equity-related trading in the important markets of Japan and Australia. We are gratified to see these efforts recognized by Cboe, which is known globally for offering cutting-edge trading and investment solutions. We are confident that Chi-X Asia Pacific will continue to grow to the benefit of the marketplaces and their participants," Thierry Porté, J.C. Flowers Managing Director.
Cboe Global Markets is advised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, King & Wood Mallesons, Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu, Sycip Salazar Hernandez & Gatmaitan, and Sidley Austin. J.C. Flowers is advised by Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Lambert & Co.
Capgemini, a global firm in consulting, digital transformation, technology, and engineering services, completed its acquisition of RXP Services, a digital, data and cloud services firm, for A$95.5m ($72m).
“RXP’s experience in delivering data and cloud solutions for a wide range of complex businesses will enable further expansion of Capgemini’s offerings in Australia and New Zealand. Their extensive expertise and knowledge further deepen our networks and capabilities to meet the anticipated growth in demand for digital services and we are delighted to welcome them to the Capgemini team,” Olaf Pietschner, Capgemini Asia-Pacific and the Middle East CEO.
Capgemini was advised by Luminis Partners and Herbert Smith Freehills.
Asia Pacific Fund, a European private equity firm, agreed to acquire Pennington Fund, a fund manager. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The pending acquisition of Pennington Fund reflects our steadfast commitment to expand our global market share. This merger qualifies as a 'pre-approved' merger under securities regulations because it does not involve any substantive changes in investment objectives or strategies for existing members of Pennington Fund. Asia Pacific Fund will have the same fee structure as the former Pennington Fund, and the acquisition will occur on a tax-deferred basis," Alexey Ivanovich, Asia Pacific Fund General Counsel.
Asia Pacific Fund is advised by Asia Mergers Guide & Benchmark.
VMS Group, an asset management firm, led a $190m Series A+ funding round in Chime Biologics, a CDMO company. The round also saw investment from Fidelity International and Panacea Venture.
"The successful completion of this financing round will further accelerate the capacity expansion process of Chime Biologics. With the rapid growth of China's biologics market and the surging demand for CDMO service, Chime Biologics will further leverage on its world-class quality system and commercial-scale manufacturing capabilities to continue providing our customers worldwide with first-class CDMO services," James Huang, Chime Biologics Chairman.
Indian government targets selling Air India by June.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government is close to inviting financial bids for flag carrier Air India, moving toward the sale of an airline that’s surviving on taxpayer money, Hardeep Puri Civil Aviation Minister said.
The financial offers are expected to come in within 64 days from the date of request. The process is likely to be completed by May or June, Bloombergreported.
“It’s a question of taking the decision and handing over the airline,” Hardeep Puri.
EmergeVest plans $250m SPAC. (FS)
Hong Kong-based private equity firm EmergeVest is planning to raise $250m through a SPAC in the US, Bloombergreported.
EmergeVest is working with Credit Suisse on the proposed SPAC listing. The blank-check company will look for merger targets in logistics, technology and financial services.
Founded in 2013, EmergeVest has more than $500m in assets under management and its current portfolio includes a UK logistics company called EV Cargo which generated over $1bn annual revenue.
Tencent-backed Linklogis seeks $1.1bn in Hong Kong IPO. (FS)
Chinese fintech company Linklogis, backed by Tencent, is seeking to raise HK$8.3bn ($1.07bn) from an IPO in Hong Kong, Bloombergreported.
The Shenzhen-based company is selling 452.9m shares at HK$16.3 ($21) to HK$18.3 ($23.5) apiece. The company plans to price the offering on March 31 and list on the exchange April 9.
Linklogis’s offering will test the appetite for first-time share sales after Hong Kong’s benchmark stock gauge slumped into a technical correction. Shares of internet giant Baidu ended flat in their debut in the city Tuesday and have fallen every day since.
TPG chooses banks for $594m Asian Pathology IPO. (FS)
TPG Capital Asia has picked banks to help prepare an initial public offering of its pathology business in the region that could raise as much as S$800m ($594m) in Singapore, Bloombergreported.
The private equity firm is working with Citigroup and CIMB Group on the planned first-time share sale of Pathology Asia. Credit Suisse Group and DBS are also working on the offering. A listing in the city-state could take place as soon as the end of this year.
Pathology Asia joins renewable energy firm Sunseap Group, Thai Beverage's brewery unit and City Developments’ UK asset real estate investment trust in seeking an IPO in Singapore.
Zhihu raises $523m in US IPO.
Chinese question and answer website Zhihu raised $523m in its US IPO after pricing its shares at $9.50 each, Reutersreported.
Zhihu sold 55m American depository shares at the bottom of the $9.5 to $11.5 range the stock was marketed at during the deal.
Zhihu’s decision to list on the NYSE comes as the SEC presses ahead with a plan for foreign companies which do not meet US auditing standards to be delisted.
GoAir plans a $403m IPO.
No-frills airline GoAir plans to come out with a c. $403m-initial share sale early next fiscal. GoAir has been working on expansion plans and an IPO will help in raising funds. GoAir flies to 39 destinations, including 10 international ones, DealStreetAsiareported.
The budget carrier, which started operations in 2005, has been contemplating about going public in the last couple of years. The airline, which has also been witnessing frequent churns in the top management, could not come out with the IPO on a few occasions earlier.
Kaisa plans to partly fund $2bn property buy via rights issue. (FS)
Chinese property developer Kaisa Group announced plans to raise up to HK$2.73bn ($351.4m) through a discounted rights share issue to partially fund a $2bn acquisition of a real-estate project, Reutersreported.
Shenzhen-based Kaisa had said a day earlier it will buy a mixed-use property development covering a total gross floor area of 201k square meters in Beijing for $2bn.
Chinese developers have been scrambling to raise cash amid tighter liquidity, as authorities put stricter caps on how much new debt they can raise and limit bank loan exposure to the real estate sector.
Byju’s to raise c.$700m at a $15bn valuation. (FS)
Byju’s is in advanced talks to raise $600-700m at a valuation of nearly $15bn, closing in on India’s most valuable startup Paytm which is worth $16bn, DealStreetAsiareported.
The Bengaluru-based company is raising money from a clutch of new investors based in the US, making it the edtech unicorn’s first fundraising round for 2021.
Byju’s was valued at $12bn when it last raised around $200m from BlackRock and T Rowe Price in November. In 2020, the company raised more than $1.25bn.
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