Deals of the day -- mergers and acquisitions

Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:05pm EDT

Aug 28 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 8.00 p.m. GMT on Wednesday:

** Nestle wants to keep its options open for its stake in cosmetics firm L'Oreal and will not extend a purchase contract with France's Bettencourt family, the food group's chairman told a Swiss newspaper.

** Loblaw Co Ltd, which last month announced a C$12.4 billion ($11.9 billion) deal to buy Shoppers Drug Mart Corp , will submit its application to the competition bureau after investors vote on the deal next month, Shoppers' chief executive said on Wednesday.

** The sale of Commerzbank, Germany's second biggest lender, is a possible option, the economy minister in the German state of Hesse was quoted as saying.

** China's Simcere Pharmaceutical Group has agreed to be taken private for about $495 million by a consortium led by founder Jinsheng Ren, joining a list of Chinese firms that are opting out of U.S. stock markets to avoid regulatory scrutiny.

** Specialty pharmaceutical company Endo Health Solutions said it would buy privately-held Boca Pharmacal for $225 million to boost its generics business, as two of its biggest drugs are set to lose patent protection.

** Britain's competition watchdog ordered Ryanair to sell most of its stake in Irish rival Aer Lingus, a potentially fatal blow to Chief Executive Michael O'Leary's dream of buying the former flag carrier.

** Institutional fixed-income trading platform providers Tradeweb and MarketAxess are among three bidders for BondDesk Group LLC in a deal that is expected to be valued up to $200 million, two sources familiar with the situation told Reuters this week.

** Citadel LLC, Virtu Financial, Two Sigma and RGM Advisors are among the companies bidding for E*Trade Financial Corp's market-making unit in a deal expected to be worth $100 million to $200 million, several sources with direct knowledge of the situation said on Wednesday.

** Swiss cement maker Holcim said it would exchange some assets and combine others with Mexican peer Cemex in Europe, with the aim of boosting operating profit by at least 20 million euros ($26.8 million).

** Private equity bidders for Hutchison Whampoa Ltd's Hong Kong supermarket chain ParknShop were dropped from the auction amid signs that strategic buyers such as China Resources Enterprise (CRE) had the upper hand in a sale expected to fetch between $3 billion to $4 billion.

KKR & Co and TPG Capital Management LP were told that they were out of the running to buy ParknShop, people close to the matter told Reuters, after their offers failed to meet the company's expectations, leaving CRE, Japan's Aeon Co Ltd and Australia's Woolworths Ltd among the suitors left in the auction.

** Russia's biggest home electronics retailer M.video said it would not go ahead with a proposed acquisition of closest rival Eldorado because they could not agree on terms.

** Styrolution, a Germany-based plastics maker jointly owned by BASF and Ineos, expects Ineos to exercise an option next year to buy out BASF.

As part of the joint venture agreement struck in October 2011, Ineos holds the right to buy BASF's 50 percent in Styrolution, a maker of plastics used in car front grills, food packaging and Playmobil toys, from February 2014 onwards.

** U.S. pipeline company Plains All American Pipeline LP said it offered around $740 million in stock to buy the 54 percent of PAA Natural Gas Storage LP that it does not already own.

** Sumitomo Metal Mining Co Ltd, Japan's second-largest copper smelter, has not ruled out using its right to match China Molybdenum Co Ltd's bid to buy a majority stake in the Northparkes copper mine in Australia, its president said on Tuesday.

** The U.S. Justice Department asked a federal court on Tuesday to set a March 3 trial date to hear arguments over whether it should stop a planned merger between US Airways and American Airlines. The companies had requested a 10-day trial that would begin on Nov. 12.