Deals of the day -- mergers and acquisitions
June 24 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Monday:
** The European Commission gave unconditional approval to Intercontinental Exchange Inc to buy NYSE Euronext for $8.2 billion on Monday, a deal that strengthens ICE's presence in the lucrative derivatives trading business.
** Vodafone has agreed to buy Germany's largest cable operator Kabel Deutschland for 7.7 billion euros ($10 billion), betting on TV and fixed-line services in its biggest deal since 2007.
** The billionaire founders of ENRC are close to finalizing a buyout bid for the London-listed Kazakh miner, valuing the troubled group at just over 3 billion pounds ($4.7 billion), below the value of a tentative proposal made in May.
** Japan's Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) is in advanced talks to acquire a majority stake in Bank of Ayudhya Pcl, Thailand's fifth-largest lender, in a deal worth over $4 billion, sources familiar with the matter said on Saturday.
** Farmstandart OAO, Russia's top drugmaker, is considering selling its over-the-counter medicines business, valued at $2.5 billion, Bloomberg reported on Monday.
** China's Huarong Asset Management Corp plans to raise up to $2 billion by selling a stake of 15 percent to 20 percent, two sources told Reuters, becoming the country's second asset management company to offer a minority stake to outsiders.
** U.S. hospital operator Tenet Healthcare Corp said on Monday it will buy smaller rival Vanguard Health Systems Inc for $1.73 billion, putting it in a better position to benefit from the millions of Americans about to get insurance under President Barack Obama's healthcare reform.
** Austrian energy group OMV AG has no plans to quit retail markets within reach of its refineries, it said on Monday, playing down a report it was in talks to sell its Czech gas stations to Unipetrol as.
** China National Petroleum Corp has agreed to buy Marathon Oil Corp's Angolan offshore oil and gas field for $1.52 billion, the country's top oil and gas producer said, marking its second major acquisition in Africa.
** Rio Tinto Ltd has scrapped the proposed sale of its $1.3 billion diamonds business, denting its plan to divest mines as it tightens operations during an industry downturn.
** Funds managed by KKR & Co LP will buy clinical research group PRA International from Genstar Capital LLC for an undisclosed amount, PRA said on Monday, underscoring growing private equity interest in the contract research industry. Sources familiar with the matter had previously told Reuters that PRA could be worth as much as $1.3 billion.
** Telefonica has agreed to sell its Irish unit O2 for 780 million euros ($1 billion) to Hutchison Whampoa subsidiary 3 Ireland, Hutchison said in a statement on Monday.
** Billionaire Oracle CEO Larry Ellison may be interested in acquiring a second Hawaii airline after he bought most of the tropical island of Lanai last year. Island Air, a Honolulu-based carrier with a handful of island-hopping planes that Ellison bought in February, confirmed discussions between Island and Phoenix-based Mesa Air Group, the parent company of Hawaii's interisland go! Airlines.
** Whiting Petroleum Corp will sell its stake in the Postle and North East Hardesty oil fields in Oklahoma, along with related pipeline and processing assets, to BreitBurn Energy Partners LP for $859.8 million, ending market skepticism about its ability to monetize the asset.
** Indebted Spanish group Telefonica has agreed to sell its O2 Ireland mobile business for 780 million euros ($1 billion) in cash to Hutchison Whampoa's local unit 3 Ireland, it was announced on Monday.
** Lafarge SA, the world's largest cement maker, has agreed to sell its North American gypsum business to U.S. private equity firm Lone Star for $700 million as part of efforts to refocus and cut debt.
** Hard disk drive maker Western Digital Corp said it would buy Stec Inc for about $340 million in cash, to become one of the top players in the high-growth solid-state drive industry that has flourished despite high prices of the storage devices.
** South Korea's Celltrion Inc said on Monday that Temasek, its key shareholder and Singapore's sovereign wealth fund, has agreed to increase its stake in the biotech firm with an investment of about $130 million, as it awaits European approval of a key drug.
** St Petersburg-based Bank Rossiya may buy a 30 percent stake in telecoms operator Tele2 Russia from fellow lender VTB as a first step to selling the company to state-controlled Rostelecom, Vedomosti newspaper reported on Monday.
** German capital group Franz Haniel & Cie on Monday said it will cut its shareholding in business equipment firm TAKKT AG from 70.44 percent to as low as 50.01 percent thorough a share placement.
** Investment firm Dubai Group has sold its credit card business to Abu Dhabi lender First Gulf Bank (FGB) for $164 million, the latest asset disposal by the debt-laden firm as it restructures $10 billion in debt.
** Dubai Holding, the conglomerate owned by the ruler of Dubai, has hired Citigroup to advise on a potential sale of its remaining 26 percent stake in mobile telephone retailer Axiom Telecom, three sources aware of the plan said.
** Spanish oil major Repsol's board will this week study a non-cash compensation offer from Argentina over the expropriation of its majority stake in energy firm YPF , a source with knowledge of the matter said.
** Gulftainer Co Ltd, the United Arab Emirates' second-largest port operator, said on Sunday it had acquired a 51 percent stake in Saudi Arabia's Gulf Stevedoring Contracting Co.