(Adds Bouygues, SAP, Baxter International)
March 26 The following bids, mergers,
acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on
** Facebook Inc will acquire two-year-old Oculus VR
Inc, a maker of virtual-reality glasses for gaming, for $2
billion, buying its way into the fast-growing wearable devices
arena with its first-ever hardware deal.
** Blackstone Group LP is close to a deal to buy
industrial conglomerate Gates Global Inc for more than $5.5
billion, people familiar with the matter said, in what would be
one of the largest leveraged buyouts so far this year.
** Dish Network Corp Chief Executive Charlie Ergen
recently contacted DirecTV CEO Mike White to discuss a
possible tie-up of the companies, Bloomberg reported, citing
sources familiar with the matter. White is reluctant to pursue a
deal and no official process is underway, Bloomberg reported.
** Austria is close to a deal to pool its Telekom Austria
stake with that of Carlos Slim's America Movil
, Rudolf Kemler, the head of state holding company OIAG
and Telekom Austria chairman, said on Wednesday.
** Israel's anti-trust authority said on Wednesday it will
allow Bezeq Israel Telecom to merge with its satellite
TV provider YES.
** Coal miner Asia Resource Minerals (ARMS) on
Tuesday announced its long-awaited split with the Indonesian
family that helped found it, sparking bitter posts on Twitter
between a family member and fellow ARMS founder Nat Rothschild.
** AstraZeneca has raised its bet on Japan's drug
market by buying out the remaining stake held by Sumitomo
Chemical in its Japanese unit AstraZeneca K.K.
** The New Zealand government said it would sell up to 49
percent of power company Genesis Energy Ltd, earning
it up to NZ$800 million ($684.5 million) from the sale.
** Standard Life has bought Ignis Asset Management
for 390 million pounds ($644 million), increasing the amount of
money it manages by one third as it shifts its business to fund
management from insurance.
** Malaysia's Ranhill Energy signed on Wednesday an
agreement for a reverse takeover of outsourcing services firm
Symphony House, paving its way to the local bourse
after scrapping a planned listing in July 2013.
** China's Citic Pacific Ltd is planning to
acquire assets from its state-owned parent Citic Group Corp
, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the
** Britain sold 4.2 billion pounds ($6.93 billion) of shares
in Lloyds Banking Group to cut its stake in the
country's largest retail bank to under 25 percent and put it on
course for a complete exit in the next year at a profit.
** Norwegian telecom firm Telenor has sold its
business providing encryption and content security for digital
TV to Switzerland's Kudelski for 1.5 billion crowns
($248 million), Telenor said on Wednesday.
** Qatar Islamic Bank has entered into exclusive
discussions to acquire a stake in Turkey's Bank Asya,
the Qatari lender said on Wednesday.
** The Australian government said it would sell state-owned
health insurer Medibank Private in a public float, which local
media have tipped could fetch about A$4 billion ($3.66 billion),
but added the structure of the sale was yet to be decided.
** Carlyle Group LP is considering buying a
traditional money manager to broaden its own investment
platform, as the private equity firm tries to attract more
retail investors and achieve the higher stock market valuation
commanded by such managers, according to sources familiar with
** French conglomerate Bouygues is searching for
additional investors to further improve its offer to buy its
larger French telecom rival Vivendi's SFR unit, two
people familiar with the situation said on Wednesday.
** German business software maker SAP said it was
buying technology firm Fieldglass as it continues aggressive
growth of its internet-based services offering.
** Medical equipment and pharmaceuticals company Baxter
International Inc is exploring a sale of its vaccines
business, according to people familiar with the matter, the
latest healthcare company to look at divesting non-core assets
to focus on key strengths.
** An 818 million euro ($1.13 billion) loan backing the
buyout of French veterinary pharmaceutical firm Ceva Sante
Animale will be Europe's first 'pure' covenant-lite loan as
investors accept riskier structures that offer fewer safeguards,
sources said on Wednesday.
** The Ukraine crisis and the possibility of a recession in
Russia creates uncertainty for Pirelli's plans to use
a tie-up with oil group Rosneft to expand in the country, seen
as a big growth market for the Italian tyre company's products.
Rosneft agreed to a deal earlier this month to
become Pirelli's single biggest shareholder, offering Pirelli
the chance to exploit the Russian company's big gas station
network to sell tyres.
($1 = 1.17 New Zealand dollars)
($1 = 0.61 British pounds)
($1 = 1.09 Australian dollars)
($1 = 0.73 Euros)
(Compiled by Neha Dimri and Sampad Patnaik in Bangalore)