(Adds Banco Popolare, Dow Chemical, Nykredit Bank)
Aug 8 The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Friday:
** U.S. publisher Hachette Book Group, owned by France's Lagardere SCA, has dropped its plan to buy unlisted Perseus Books Group, the companies confirmed on Friday.
** Shares of Chilean lender CorpBanca SA are likely to keep trading sideways in spite of stronger-than-expected second-quarter results, as uncertainty grows over completion of the merger with Brazilian banking giant Itaú Unibanco Holding SA , Santander Investment Securities analysts said in a client note.
** Italy's Banco Popolare is looking to sell chunks of soured loans after pulling the sale of a majority stake in its bad debt unit earlier this year and is currently in talks over the disposal of a 300-400 million euro pool, its CEO said on Friday.
** Dow Chemical Co is seeing interest from private equity firms in buying its Sodium Borohydride unit, according to sources familiar with the transaction.
** Denmark's Nykredit Bank said on Friday it had acquired a 4 billion Danish crown ($719 million) commercial loan portfolio from FIH Erhvervs Bank.
** Alitalia and Etihad airlines' executives signed a tie-up agreement on Friday in Rome that foresees Abu Dhabi-based Etihad taking a 49 percent stake in Italy's loss-making carrier.
The total investment in Italy's Alitalia airline following a tie-up agreement with Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways will be 1.758 billion euros ($2.36 billion), a statement from Alitalia said on Friday.
** Several Italian utilities and private equity groups are expected to hand in tentative offers worth about 2 billion euros ($2.7 billion) for E.ON's Italian unit early next week, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.
** The parent of yearbook and class ring company Herff Jones is exploring a sale of the whole corporation that could fetch up to $1 billion, people familiar with the matter said on Friday.
** Azeri state energy company SOCAR is in talks with Turkish businessman Fettah Tamince to sell its 50 percent stake in Turkey's Star media group, SOCAR Turkey told Reuters on Friday.
** British engineering firm Hyder Consulting Plc has accepted a 268 million pound ($451 million) takeover offer from Japan's Nippon Koei Co Ltd, just days after recommending a bid from Dutch firm Arcadis.
** Malaysia's government will carry out a "complete overhaul" of its troubled national airline Malaysia Airline System in an attempt to revive the loss-making company after it was hit by two jetliner disasters this year. State investment fund Khazanah Nasional has proposed a 1.4 billion ringgit ($436 million) buy-out of the shares it does not own and take the airlines private.
** Gemalto NV, a digital security company that makes SIM cards for mobile phones and biometric passports, will buy U.S.-based data protection specialist SafeNet Inc for $890 million in a move set to boost its earnings and reach.
** Telecom Italia SpA has lined up Citigroup , Mediobanca and Banco Bradesco SA to advise on a deal to acquire Vivendi's Brazilian unit GVT, people familiar with the situation said.
** DirecTV and AT&T Inc would jointly own a Houston sports network under a plan to end the network's bankruptcy, although current part-owner Comcast Corp warned it may challenge the proposal.
** Australia's Clinuvel Pharmaceuticals Ltd rejected an unsolicited takeover proposal from biopharmaceutical company Retrophin Inc, saying the offer "materially undervalues the company".
** London-based private equity firm 3i Group Plc had hired U.S. bank Goldman Sachs Group Inc to run a potential sale of British luxury lingerie retailer Agent Provocateur, the New York Times reported, citing a source.
** Singapore's competition watchdog has cleared a proposal from struggling budget airline Tiger Airways Ltd and Scoot Pte Ltd to extend their partnership in a move that is expected to help both carriers boost traffic.
** Turkish Islamic lender Bank Asya said an exclusive deal with Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB) to acquire a stake in the Turkish lender was annulled, opening the way for alternative suitors. (Compiled by Amrutha Penumudi and Lehar Maan in Bangalore)
Blackstone prepares to list European warehouse firm Logicor
LONDON/FRANKFURT, Dec 9 Buyout fund Blackstone is hiring banks to prepare for an initial public offering (IPO) of its warehouse firm Logicor, several people with knowledge of the situation said.
UPDATE 2-Trump offers Goldman executive Cohn key economic post -NBC
WASHINGTON/NEW YORK, Dec 9 U.S. President-elect Donald Trump has asked senior Goldman Sachs banker Gary Cohn to coordinate economic policy across his administration, turning to Wall Street for expertise in managing the world's largest economy, NBC News reported on Friday.