July 19 (Reuters) - The following corporate finance-related stories were reported by media on Friday:
* Obesity drugmaker Vivus Inc is close to reaching a settlement with First Manhattan Co, giving the dissident investor a majority of the company board, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Thursday evening.
* Australian mining magnate Gina Rinehart's $10 billion Roy Hill iron ore project has overcome key hurdles holding up debt negotiations, a move that could pave the way for the mine to start producing by September 2015, sources said on Thursday.
* Pfizer Inc decided not to pursue a bid for Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc this week, according to two people familiar with the matter, leaving Amgen Inc in front position to buy the cancer drugmaker
* Private equity firm Bain Capital has agreed to buy a majority stake in British government-owned Plasma Resources UK (PRUK) for around 200 million pounds ($303.46 million), a source close to the deal said on Thursday.
* Heavily indebted Russian coal miner Mechel could get about $850 million by handing over control of three of its loss-making mills to their former owner, a Russian newspaper said on Thursday.
* Gazprom wants the government to invest state pension fund money in the South Stream pipeline, which will carry Russian gas to southern Europe, through an issue of infrastructure bonds, Kommersant daily said on Thursday.
* Japanese telecoms group SoftBank Corp offered to pay $8.5 billion to acquire Universal Music but its owner, French media and entertainment conglomerate Vivendi, rejected the bid, the Financial Times reported on Thursday, citing people familiar with the proposal.
* MBK Partners Ltd, a private equity fund formed by former Carlyle Group executives, is considering a Singapore initial public offering for Taiwan's China Network Systems Co, said two people with knowledge of the matter, Bloomberg reported. ()
* Charter Communications Inc, backed by billionaire John Malone, is working with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to pursue a bid for Time Warner Cable Inc, according to people with knowledge of the situation, Bloomberg reported. ()