(Adds Dell, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, Melrose Industries
July 31 The following bids, mergers,
acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on
** Michael Dell's and Silver Lake's $24.4 billion bid to
take Dell Inc private suffered a blow on Wednesday
after the company's special committee rejected their request to
change the voting rules in exchange for them offering $150
** Hedge fund manager William Ackman unveiled his biggest
bet ever on Wednesday, a $2.2 billion play on Air Products &
Chemicals Inc, that the billionaire trader kept secret
for two months.
** Deutsche Bank and Italian businessman Maurizio
Borletti have sold French luxury department store chain
Printemps to Qatari investors for 1.75 billion euros ($2.32
billion), a source familiar with the transaction told Reuters.
** Sony Corp's board is expected to reject a
proposal from activist investor Daniel Loeb, whose fund is the
company's largest shareholder, to spin-off part of its
entertainment division, the Nikkei newspaper reported.
** Credit Suisse Group AG is in advanced talks to
sell its private equity business to Grosvenor Capital Management
LP as the bank adapts to stricter rules for managing capital and
risk, a person familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.
** UK turnaround specialist Melrose Industries is
moving ahead with the sale of its U.S. lifting unit Crosby worth
about $1 billion and is expected to receive first-round bids in
mid-August, three sources familiar with the matter said.
** Europe's largest biotech company Actelion said
it will acquire Ceptaris, a privately held U.S.-based specialty
pharmaceutical company developing a topical drug, Valchlor, to
treat a form of cancer.
** Diageo Plc may be close to a deal that would help
it reclaim its dominant position in the global tequila market,
according to a senior executive.
** After three aborted privatisation attempts in 19 years,
Britain's Royal Mail postal service looks closer than ever to a
sale that would end almost five centuries of ties to the state.
But the centre-right coalition government must first convince
investors, nervous lawmakers and a heavily unionised workforce
still opposed to private ownership.
Although the sale proceeds, estimated at 1-1.5 billion
pounds ($1.52-2.27 billion), won't make a big dent in Britain's
1.5 trillion pound debt, the opposition Labour party says the
deal is being rushed through to improve borrowing figures and
that a profitable Royal Mail should stay public.
** Fiat may step up efforts to negotiate a full
buyout of majority-owned Chrysler out of court, sources said,
after a Delaware judge prolonged the Italian carmaker's legal
tussle with a minority shareholder, the UAW union healthcare
** Cubist Pharmaceuticals Inc has agreed to pay up
to $1.6 billion for Trius Therapeutics Inc and Optimer
Pharmaceuticals Inc, expanding its heft in antibiotics
at a time when the number of drug-resistant viruses are on the
** Germany's Loewe AG has struck a strategic
partnership with China's Hisense International Co., Ltd
that includes no cash funding, leaving the troubled
high-end TV maker still searching for investors, Loewe's chief
** British utility Centrica Plc sees the United
States as a more attractive market for acquisitions than its
home ground, it said, implying a shift in focus to North America
for one of Britain's largest energy investors.
** Dutch publisher Wolters Kluwer NV plans
further investment in Europe, where it sees some pockets of
growth, Chief Executive Nancy McKinstry said.
** AstraZeneca Plc took another step to bolster its
new drug pipeline by striking a deal with U.S. biotech firm
FibroGen potentially worth more than $815 million for rights to
an experimental anemia drug.
** Guggenheim Partners has agreed to "enhanced" protections
in its purchase of Sun Life Insurance and Annuity Company to
safeguard policy holders, paving the way for the state
Department of Financial Services to approve the acquisition, New
York's top financial regulator said in a statement on Wednesday.
** Talisman Energy Inc said it has opened a data
room for potential buyers of its assets in Norway's North Sea,
which produce 13,000 barrels of oil per day, adding to current
plans to sell stakes in two Canadian shale-gas fields and its
stake in Colombia's Ocensa pipeline.
** Chinese bank ICBC is in advanced talks to buy
Standard Bank's markets business in London for more than $500
million, sources said, illustrating a growing appetite in China
to trade commodities as well as consume them.
** BHP Billiton said it has decided not to
sell its Gregory Crinum coal mining complex in Australia, a move
that could bode ill for other major miners looking to dump
assets amid a sharp downturn in the coal market.
** Spain's second-biggest bank BBVA would analyze
the acquisitions of nationalized lenders Catalunya Banc
SA and NCG Banco if they were to come up for auction,
Chief Executive Angel Cano said.
** CTBC Financial Holding Co Ltd, the parent of
Taiwan's top credit card issuer, will acquire the local
insurance unit of Manulife Financial Corp for less than
T$1 billion ($33 million), said a source with direct knowledge
of the deal.
** China's largest bulk shipper, China COSCO Holdings Co Ltd
, may sell some of its $1.6-billion
property assets to avoid a delisting after it flagged a
first-half loss, weighed down by a slump in the global shipping
** Management consulting firm Accenture Plc is in
talks to acquire rival Booz & Co, a deal that would beef up its
strategy and operations consulting services, the Wall Street
Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
** Portugal's competition authority approved a merger
between cable TV operator Zon Multimedia SGPS SA and
Sonaecom SGPS SA's mobile phone unit Optimus that will
create the country's second-largest telecoms firm, the companies
** Austrian investment group B&C Industrieholding GmbH said
it was not interested in buying a stake in Austrian peer EVN AG
held by German utility EnBW.
** Citic Securities Co Ltd has completed its
acquisition of the remaining 80 percent stake it did not own in
brokerage CLSA, the Chinese securities company said in a Hong
Kong Stock Exchange filing.
** Singapore's DBS Group Holdings Ltd said it
would not pursue a $7.2 billion takeover of Bank Danamon
Indonesia Tbk PT, a deal that had been stuck in limbo
after regulators threw a spanner in the process.
** New British bank Aldermore reported a surge in profit in
the first half and said it was seeking acquisitions to speed up
its expansion, setting a target to grow its balance sheet to 5
billion pounds ($7.6 billion) by the end of 2014.
** France's Suez Environnement Co plans further
cost cuts to maintain its 2013 profit targets. The company said
it is ready to make acquisitions in Europe's waste industry,
where asset prices have fallen as the economic crisis bites.
** Royal Dutch Shell Plc will sell at least four
more oil blocks in Nigeria in its latest divestment from
Africa's top oil exporter, three oil industry sources familiar
with the deals said.
** German engineering group Siemens AG will book
a one-time gain of about 400 million euros ($530 million) from
the sale of its stake in Nokia Siemens Networks in its current
financial year, its designated chief executive said.
** HSBC Holdings Plc is struggling to exit its
Iraqi operations, having had two proposals to sell its stake in
Dar Es Salaam Investment Bank rejected by the
country's regulator, according to the Iraq Securities
** Belarusian potash producer Belaruskali said it had not
been consulted by Uralkaliy OAO before the Russian
company quit their joint venture and promised a new sales
strategy to address the new market conditions.
** Russia's Uralkali could discuss
joining with Belarus in a Swiss-based trading company to export
potash, but will not return to the Minsk-based venture which
broke apart on Tuesday, the Russian firm's CEO said on
** Energizer Holdings Inc said it planned to buy
Johnson & Johnson's feminine care brands in the United
States, Canada and the Caribbean for $185 million.
** Italian dairy group Parmalat said on Wednesday
it had bought Brazil's Balkis Industria e Comercio de Laticinios
for 70 million reais ($30.5 million) to boost its gourmet cheese
** High-profile fund manager Nicola Horlick has backed the
growing crowdfunding market by selling a stake in her latest
venture via a website which allows members of the public to
invest in small businesses.
British crowdfunding website Seedrs said on Wednesday
Horlick had raised 150,000 pounds ($228,900) for a 10 percent
stake in her startup fund management company Glentham Capital.
(Compiled by Varun Aggarwal and Maria Ajit Thomas in Bangalore)