Deals of the day- Mergers and acquisitions
(Adds Loblaw, CDP Reti, Tencent, La Redoute, Asia Resource Minerals)
March 21 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Friday:
** Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings has agreed to buy a 24.9 percent stake in Li Ka-shing's retail business A.S. Watson for about HK$44 billion ($5.67 billion).
** Media General Inc said it would buy LIN Media LLC for $1.6 billion to create a broadcaster reaching nearly a quarter of U.S. households with a television.
** Canadian private equity investment firm Onex Corp said it would sell Warranty Group, a provider of extended warranty contracts, to an affiliate of TPG Capital Management LP for an enterprise value of about $1.5 billion.
** The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) said on Friday it agreed to buy U.S. life insurance and reinsurance provider Wilton Re Holdings Ltd for $1.8 billion from a group of private equity firms, the first foray by the global dealmaker into the U.S. insurance business.
** Loblaw Cos Ltd, Canada's largest grocer, said the country's competition watchdog has approved its C$12.4 billion ($11 billion) acquisition of pharmacy chain Shoppers Drug Mart Corp.
** The Indian government has raised more than $900 million by selling a 9 percent stake in Axis Bank Ltd, two sources with direct knowledge of the development said on Friday.
** China's State Grid Corp and Australian infrastructure fund IFM are in pole position to take stakes in a company that controls Italian energy grids, two sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters.
Italian state lender Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) is offering up to 49 percent of CDP Reti, a vehicle which controls gas transport company Snam and that should soon also control power grid operator Terna.
** Coal miner Asia Resource Minerals (ARMS) said its co-founding Bakrie family had paid the $278 million cash portion of a long-awaited deal to split from ARMS, which it hopes will end shareholder battles.
Everything is now in place to complete the separation by March 25, ARMS said on Friday.
** Swiss engineering group ABB said on Friday it had agreed to sell its U.S. Thomas & Betts' heating, ventilation and air conditioning business to U.S. conglomerate Nortek for $260 million in cash.
** Tencent, China's largest internet company, has agreed to spend $180 million on a 15 percent stake in online services provider Leju Holdings, stepping up its rivalry with fellow online heavyweight Alibaba Group IPO-ALIB.N.
** The future of France's loss-making mail order business La Redoute hung in the balance on Friday after its main unions rejected a restructuring deal and management said it had no other option than asking the courts to intervene.
In December, parent luxury group Kering reached a deal to sell the business for a symbolic 1 euro ($1.38) to La Redoute's chief executive Nathalie Balla and Eric Courteille, chief administrative officer of Redcats, La Redoute's immediate parent.
** Spanish property company Colonial said on Friday it had abandoned plans to sell part of its 53 percent stake in French business Societe Fonciere Lyonnaise and would instead issue more new shares to raise funds.
** Swiss food giant Nestle and diversified German healthcare group Fresenius are among the four groups that have shown interest in buying the Medical Nutrition unit of France's Danone, daily Les Echos said on Thursday.
** Britain's Tesco has sealed a joint venture agreement with a unit of India's Tata Group that will see it invest $140 million and become the first foreign supermarket to enter the country's $500 billion retail sector.
** BlackBerry Ltd said on Friday it had reached an agreement to sell the vast majority of its real estate holdings in Canada, as part of a plan outlined earlier this year that is aimed at bolstering the smartphone maker's balance sheet.
** Singapore's Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Ltd said it has not entered any biding agreement on its offer to take over Hong Kong's Wing Hang Bank Ltd, after having extended the deadlines for the deal twice in the past two months.
** Sana Kliniken AG, the third-largest private-sector hospitals operator in Germany, has trained its sights on major rivals as potential takeover targets in the long term to keep up with industry leader Fresenius.
** Sinclair Broadcast Group proposed on Thursday to sell some Allbritton TV stations it agreed to acquire in a deal last July to meet requirements of broadcasting regulators about companies sharing advertising and sales staff across competing stations.
** Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd said on Thursday that it had purchased an additional 3.4 percent of Torstar Corp , pushing its total holding in the Canadian newspaper company to 22.7 percent.
** Private equity firm Golden Gate Capital disclosed a 9.5 percent stake in women's apparel retailer Ann Inc and said it believed the company's stock was significantly undervalued. (Compiled by Avik Das in Bangalore)
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