Dec 5 The following bids, mergers, acquisitions
and disposals were reported by 2100 GMT on Wednesday:
** A conglomerate controlled by Thailand's richest man,
Dhanin Chearavanont, has bought a minority stake in China's Ping
An Insurance for HK$72.7 billion ($9.38 billion) from
global bank HSBC, a bold move that ranks as Asia's
second-largest deal this year.
** Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc on Wednesday
said it struck a deal to buy Plains Exploration & Production Co
and McMoRan Exploration Co for a total of $9
billion in a bold bid to diversify into the U.S. energy sector.
** A consortium led by Canada's KingSett Capital will offer
about C$2.6 billion ($2.62 billion) to acquire Primaris Retail
REIT to bolster its portfolio of Canadian shopping
malls at a time when U.S. retailers are looking to expand
** Brazil's state-controlled oil company Petrobras
is having trouble selling more than $4 billion of
offshore oil exploration and production assets in the U.S. Gulf
of Mexico, sources familiar with the matter said.
** Private equity groups Charterhouse and CVC
have hired Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs
to sell energy-metering firm Ista, two people
close to the transaction said.
The sale is set to become one of the biggest private equity
transactions in Germany next year with a price tag of up to
about 3 billion euros ($3.9 billion), they told Reuters.
** Italian energy group ERG said on Wednesday it
had agreed to buy wind power assets from France's GDF Suez
in Italy and Germany to become Italy's largest wind
ERG said the enterprise value of the deal was 859 million
euros ($1.12 billion).
** U.S. private equity firm Blackstone Group LP has
agreed to buy Dutch tax consultancy Intertrust for a reported
675 million euros ($883 million).
** Germany's Intersnack group is to buy KP Snacks, Britain's
second-largest savory snacks maker, in a deal that could pave
the way for the sale of the rest of United Biscuits by the
company's private equity owners.
A source familiar with the situation said the deal was worth
more than 500 million pounds ($805 million).
** Repsol filed a U.S. lawsuit to block Chevron
Corp's deal with Argentina's YPF, ramping up
the Spanish oil company's legal response to the loss of its
assets in Argentina.
** French-Tunisian media businessman Tarak Ben Ammar has
acquired a TV network in Egypt in a deal worth tens of millions
of euros that is the first step to create a pan-Arab media
** Citigroup is looking at the possible sale of its
consumer banking business in Turkey, leaving it to focus on
corporate and commercial banking in the country, its local unit
said on Wednesday.
** Kit Digital Inc's former chief executive
significantly lowered the price he was willing to pay to buy the
video technology provider, citing the company's worsening
liquidity and capital structure issues.
** Shareholders of chemical manufacturer TPC Group Inc
approved the sale of the company to private equity
firms First Reserve Corp and SK Capital, after Innospec Inc
withdrew its bid earlier this week.
** A consortium led by Brazilian bank BTG Pactual and
Spanish infrastructure firm Abertis is negotiating the
purchase of road concessions from the Catalan government for 430
million euros ($563 million), two sources said.
** A Mexican private fund has offered to buy Maxcom
Telecomunicaciones for around 700 million pesos ($54 million),
or 2.9 pesos per share, the telecom firm said in a statement to
the stock exchange on Tuesday.
** Mobile telecoms equipment joint venture Nokia Siemens
Networks said on Wednesday it plans to sell its
business support systems business to Redknee as part of
a drive to sell non-core assets. The companies said Redknee will
pay 15 million euros ($19.63 million), plus a maximum of 25
million euros for "performance-based cash earn-outs."
** PMI Gold Corporation will merge with Keegan
Resources Inc to form a new company focused on west
Ghana, Africa's second largest producer of gold.
** British retail billionaire Philip Green is in advanced
talks with a U.S. private equity firm over the sale of a 25
percent stake in high street chain Topshop and Topman, a source
familiar with the matter told Reuters.
** Gulf carrier Etihad Airways intends to take control of
Air Berlin's frequent flyer program TopBonus Ltd,
according to a filing placed with the Austrian Cartel Authority
** Spirits group Diageo Plc said it would consider
buying out the 50 percent of premium vodka brand Ketel One it
does not already own if it came on the market.
** Swiss regional bank Valiant and Berner
Kantonalbank said they are in talks about a possible
** Dutch insurer Aegon said on Wednesday it has agreed to
buy Ukrainian insurance company Fidem Life to strengthen its
position in the developing central and Eastern European markets.
** Italian bank UniCredit's Chief Executive
Federico Ghizzoni said part-owned Turkish lender Yapi Kredi Bank
could complete a sale of its insurance arm Yapi Kredi
Sigorta by the middle of next year if the right
partner is found.
Yapi Kredi is currently in the process of trying to sell the
insurance unit, which bankers have said was valued at around 1.6
billion lira ($900 million).
** The Czech government will decide on the privatization of
Czech Airlines (CSA) as early as April next year after weighing
possible bids from Korean Air and Qatar