RPT-Market Chatter- Corporate finance press digest

Wed Sep 18, 2013 1:46am EDT

Sept 18 (Reuters) - The following corporate finance-related stories were reported by media on Wednesday:

* Westports Holdings Bhd, operator of Malaysia's busiest port, is expected to launch on Thursday the bookbuilding for its 2.03 billion ringgit ($625 million) initial public offering in Malaysia, according to sources with knowledge of the deal.

* China's Shuanghui International is close to securing shareholder approval for its $4.7 billion offer for Smithfield Foods Inc, which would be the biggest purchase of a U.S. company by a Chinese firm, ahead of the vote next week, three people familiar with the matter said.

* Canadian private equity firm Onex Corp is preparing to sell The Warranty Group, a provider of extended warranty contracts, which is expected to fetch more than $1 billion, two people familiar with the matter said this week.

* Clovis Oncology Inc, a cancer-focused drugmaker, is considering selling itself, three people familiar with the deal told Reuters this week.

* Bahrain-based fund Investcorp is one of several investors who have expressed a preliminary interest in buying a stake in Versace, one of Italy's best-known luxury brands, sources close to the situation told Reuters.

* Italian phone company Telecom Italia's controlling shareholders are in talks with Telefonica and other interested parties to buy their stakes, said a person familiar with the matter on Tuesday.

* Shareholders in Mediobanca have decided to allow the sale of insurer Fondiaria-SAI's stake the Italian merchant bank, a person familiar with the situation said on Tuesday.

* AT&T Inc is seeking buyers for its wireless telecommunication towers and is working with TAP Advisors LLC and JPMorgan Chase & Co on the sale, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

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