Xylem, a global water technology company, completed the acquisition of Evoqua, a provider of mission-critical water treatment solutions and services, for $7.5bn.
"Solving the world’s water challenges has never been more urgent. Our acquisition of Evoqua creates a transformative global platform to address water scarcity, affordability and resilience at even greater scale. The combined company delivers an unparalleled portfolio of advanced technologies, integrated services and application expertise across the water cycle," Patrick Decker, Xylem President and CEO.
Global Net Lease, a publicly traded real estate investment trust, agreed to merge with The Necessity Retail REIT, a preeminent publicly traded real estate investment trust, in a $375 deal.
"The merger of Global Net Lease and The Necessity Retail REIT is an exceptional opportunity to build a premier global net lease portfolio with very attractive future prospects. GNL Post-closing's enhanced corporate governance is highlighted by a majority-independent, declassified Board, as well as other enhancements that we are proud to institute. Combined with the internalization of management, we are realizing significant cost savings to our stockholders. I am honored to have the opportunity to lead an experienced and diverse group that is dedicated to building the long-term value of GNL," Sue Perrotty, GNL Chair of the Board of Directors.
The Necessity Retail is advised by Truist Securities and Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer. Global Net Lease is advised by BMO Capital Markets and Shapiro Sher Guinot & Sandler.
WHP Global, an investment company, and Express, a fashion retailer, completed the acquisition of Bonobos, a menswear fashion brand, from Walmart, a supermarket operator, for $75m.
“Bonobos joined the Walmart family to expand our assortment and expertise in menswear. Since acquiring Bonobos, Walmart.com has grown from 70 million to hundreds of millions of items. After nearly six years, we’ve decided it’s the right time to sell Bonobos,” Walmart.
Tenth Avenue-backed From You Flowers, a floral ecommerce company, completed the merger with Nexus Capital-backed FTD, a floral company. Finanical terms were not disclosed.
"We are bringing together two businesses with a shared vision to deliver exceptional service to our florist members and consumers," said Chapin. "The merger will enable From You Flowers' best-in-class ecommerce operation to accelerate the growth of FTD's already impressive floral distribution network," Michael Chapin, From You Flowers Founder and CEO.
FTD was advised by Jefferies & Company and Munger Tolles & Olson. From Your Flowers was advised by Zukerman Gore Brandeis & Crossman.
Roc360, a real estate financing firm, completed the acquisition of Civic Financial Services' origination assets, a financial services assets, from PacWest, a financial services compamy. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"In the face of market difficulties, we continue to expand and develop more products and services for real estate investors. We believe that America's housing stock is severely undersupplied, with more than 50% of homes in deferred maintenance, lacking the modern-day energy efficiencies that our clients install with each loan they take from us. We will continue to prudently expand and invest for long-term solutions to these structural problems," Arvind Raghunathan, Roc360 Founder and Chief Executive Officer.
Spark Capital, a venture capital firm that invests in the consumer, commerce, fintech, software, frontier, and media sectors, led a $450m Series C round in Anthropic, an AI-driven research company that focuses on increasing the safety of large-scale AI systems, with participation from Google, Salesforce Ventures, Sound Ventures, Zoom Ventures.
"We are thrilled that these leading investors and technology companies are supporting Anthropic's mission: AI research and products that put safety at the frontier. The systems we are building are being designed to provide reliable AI services that can positively impact businesses and consumers now and in the future," Dario Amodei, Anthropic CEO.
AyurMaya Capital, a private equity firm, led a $401m Series D round in ElevateBio, a biotechnology company, with participation from Woodline, Novo Nordisk, Matrix Capital Management, The Invus Group, Emerson Collective, SoftBank Vision Fund 2, Fidelity Management & Research Company, MPM Capital, F2 Ventures, Redmile Group, EcoR1 Capital, Samsara BioCapital, Surveyor Capital, EDBI, Vertex Ventures and iTochu.
“ElevateBio has created a truly disruptive business model with integrated technologies, capabilities, and capacity for which we see accelerating need as the complexity of cell and gene therapies continues to grow. In this still-nascent industry, we believe ElevateBio is looking several steps ahead to pave the path for partners across the biopharmaceutical industry to accelerate innovation and bridge the gap between discovery and widespread delivery of cell and gene therapies as everyday medicine,” Khalil Barrage, The Invus Group Managing Director.
Ryan Specialty, an international specialty insurance firm, agreed to acquire Socius Insurance, a wholesale insurance broker, from Abry Partners, an investment company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“We are thrilled to have the high-quality Socius team join Ryan Specialty. We have known them for many years and admire their professional approach to the business, technical acumen, and phenomenal execution. We look forward to embracing these talented individuals and providing even more opportunities to them as they become a part of the RT Specialty platform," Tim Turner, Ryan Specialty President.
CPFL and Equatorial eye acquisition of Enel-owned power distributor in Brazil.
Equatorial Energia and CPFL Energia are both considering buying a power distribution firm owned by Italy's Enel in Brazil.
The energy companies confirmed in separate security filings they were eyeing the acquisition of Enel Ceara, a company formerly known as Coelce that distributes power in the northeastern state of Ceara.
Citigroup scraps Mexico unit sale, will pursue IPO instead.
Citigroup scrapped the sale of its Mexican consumer unit, known as Banamex, and will pursue an initial public offering instead, Reutersreported.
"After careful consideration, we concluded the optimal path to maximizing the value of Banamex for our shareholders and advancing our goal to simplify our firm is to pivot from our dual path approach to focus solely on an IPO of the business," Jane Fraser, Citigroup CEO.
Axa Venture Partners eyes $1.6bn for new tech fund. (FS)
Venture capital fund Axa Venture Partners is looking to raise $1.6bn for a new late-stage fund that will make investments in European and North American tech startups, with a focus on businesses that expect to go public within three to four years.
The new fund will extend Axa Venture's existing range of venture, growth and funds of funds stage investment vehicles, and could potentially remain invested in portfolio companies after any IPOs.
QED Investors closes nearly $1bn in new funds. (FS)
Global fintech venture capital firm QED Investors has closed two new funds with combined capital commitments of $925m – Fund VIII, an oversubscribed $650m early stage fund, and Growth II, a $275m early growth-stage fund.
The new funds will allow QED to continue to invest in disruptive fintech companies in the US, the UK and Europe, Latin America, India and Southeast Asia and Africa.
UBS Group said it was in negotiations with Swiss authorities about loss protections related to its takeover of Credit Suisse Group and its regulatory capital requirements.
The disclosure underscores how some aspects of the tie-up between the two banks, arranged hastily over a weekend in mid-March by the Swiss government to stave off a broader banking crisis, Reutersreported.
LondonMetric Property, a real estate company that is engaged in property investment and development across the United Kingdom, offered to acquire CT Property Trust, a trust investing in a diversified UK commercial property portfolio, for £199m.
"This Acquisition by LondonMetric allows our shareholders to benefit from being exposed to an enlarged UK-REIT with an approximately £3bn property portfolio, continuously growing dividends and an outstanding track record of shareholder value creation. The Acquisition also represents a compelling premium to the CTPT Share Price. We therefore recommend the Acquisition to shareholders," Davina Walter, CT Property Trust Chairman.
Kistos, an independent energy company, completed the acquisition of Mime Petroleum, an oil and gas company, for $110m.
"After a period during which commodity price volatility and fiscal uncertainty has made it difficult to agree deals in the UK and the Netherlands, I am very pleased to be able to announce Kistos' expansion into Norway. Kistos has evaluated several transactions in the UK and Dutch sectors, but the imposition of punitive windfall taxes and a lack of fiscal certainty have meant that both countries remain difficult places to commit capital and ensure continuity of shareholder returns," Andrew Austin, Kistos Executive Chairman.
Hillenbrand, a provider of highly engineered, mission-critical, processing equipment and systems, agreed to acquire Schenck Process' food and performance materials business, a business that specializes in the design, manufacturing, and service of feeding, filtration, baking, and material handling technologies, from Blackstone for $730m.
"With this acquisition, we further strengthen our leadership across the attractive, growing end markets of food, durable plastics and chemicals, through strong brands that enhance the breadth of our technology and service capabilities. By combining the applications and systems processing expertise of our Advanced Process Solutions segment with FPM, we will be positioned to offer greater value to our customers and drive scale benefits across manufacturing, engineering, and procurement," Kim Ryan, Hillenbrand President and CEO.
Cadence, an EDA and intelligent system design provider, completed the acquisition of Pulsic, a provider of production-proven technology for floorplanning, placement, and routing of custom ICs. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"The addition of Pulsic further strengthens Cadence's Virtuoso Studio commitment to using AI to facilitate our many customers as they push through the traditionally manual tasks of custom design and enter new realms of design possibility via automation and innovation," Cadence.
Holcim, a provider of building materials, completed the acquisition of Besblock, a concrete materials provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“The acquisition of Besblock Ltd is an important step toward becoming the UK’s leading supplier of innovative and sustainable building solutions. With its product range and strong sustainability profile, we’re delighted to combine forces with this progressive and market-leading business. I look forward to welcoming all Besblock employees into the Holcim family and investing in our next era of growth together,” Miljan Gutovic, Holcim Head Europe.
Bollore no plan of Vivendi take over
French conglomerate Bollore isn't planning to take over French mass media holding company Vivendi, according to the company's Chief Executive Officer Cyrille Bollore.
Bollore, son of French billionaire Vincent Bollore, said that recent sale of 19m Vivendi shares for a total of €177m ($191m) is a sign that no buyout offer is planned, Bloombergreported.
Georg Fischer said to weigh potential counterbid for Uponor.
Swiss industrial company Georg Fischer is exploring a potential offer for Finnish plumbing-equipment manufacturer Uponor setting up the prospect of a bidding war with Belgium's Aliaxis, Bloombergreported.
Shares of Uponor jumped as much as 14% hitting the highest intraday level since 2007. They were up 4.8% at the close in Helsinki, giving the company a market capitalization of $2.2bn. George Fischer fell 4.1% in Zurich, valuing the company at $5.6bn. Uponor said on May 16 it's assessing "strategic alternatives" after receiving "indications of interest from other parties in relation to potential strategic transactions" without disclosing names. That followed a hostile takeover bid last month from Aliaxis that was spurned by Uponor's board and largest shareholder. Aliaxis unveiled an improved $2bn cash offer for Uponor on April 17th, which was also rejected as being too low.
Asset manager GAM talks to Carne Group about transfer of part of business. (FS)
Asset manager GAM is in exclusive talks on the transfer of its fund management services in Luxembourg and Switzerland to Carne Group.
"Following the recent announcement of our intention to transfer the Fund Management Services business in Luxembourg and Switzerland to another provider, we are pleased to confirm that we are in exclusive discussions with the Carne Group," GAM.
Liontrust earlier this month conditionally agreed to acquire GAM in a deal that valued the company at CHF107m ($119m) and under which Liontrust would offer 0.0589 ordinary shares of Liontrust for one GAM share. Also, Swiss entrepreneur Marco Garzetti is prepared to invest CHF65m ($73m) in GAM and provide an alternative to the Liontrust offer.
Blazehill Capital closes fund II at £250m. (FS)
Blazehill Capital, a credit opportunities debt fund providing flexible financing solutions to mid-market businesses, has held the final close of its £250m ($310m) Fund II, just two years on from the launch of its maiden fund.
With £250m ($310m) in fresh capital from global investor, InterVest Capital Partners, Fund II will build on the success of Fund I, focusing on the mid-market and providing facilities of between £5m ($6.2m) and £50m ($62m). The fund will also support the business' wider growth strategy, which aims to build a platform with in excess of £1bn ($1.2bn) in assets under management over the next five years. Blazehill provides supportive capital to companies requiring new or additional financial support, which they cannot necessarily access from traditional funding sources. It covers a range of financial transactions including acquisitions, growth capital, refinancings and recapitalizations.
Moonfire Ventures raises $115m to fund European tech startups and AI firms. (FS)
Moonfire Ventures, launched in 2020 by former Atomico co-founder Mattias Ljungman, said that it had raised $115m to invest in European startup technology firms and in the AI sector.
The fund-raising by Moonfire Ventures highlights the growth in Europe of artificial intelligence, which has led politicians around the world to examine how AI could be better regulated.
"Europe has been a leader in AI and we find our best fit is to support the next generation of founders solving some of our greatest challenges within health, work, finance and gaming," Mattias Ljungman, Moonfire Ventures Founder.
Qatar Investment Authority, the Qatar's sovereign wealth fund, and Esas Private Equity, a private equity arm of ESAS, completed an $105m investment in Insider, a marketing platform.
"Following QIA's lead in Insider's Series D round in 2022, we have been encouraged by Insider's growth strategy and resilience. We are pleased to further support the company's vision to expand. Led by our specialist technology, media, and telecoms investment team, QIA looks to partner with companies at the forefront of innovation and development. As a female-led tech unicorn, Insider is proving to be a leader in the marketing tech ecosystem," Ahmed Ali Al-Hammadi, QIA CIO of Europe.
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