April 20 The following bids, mergers,
acquisitions and disposals involving European, U.S. and Asian
companies were reported by 2000 GMT on Friday:
** French food group Danone has raised its offer
for Pfizer's infant nutrition business to close to $11
billion in an attempt to outbid rival Nestle,
according to news website WanSquare.
** Carlyle Group is among private equity funds
bidding for a stake in unlisted South Korean group Kyobo Life
Insurance worth around $1.8 billion, sources with direct
knowledge of the matter told Reuters.
** Private equity firm Apollo Global Management raised its
offer to acquire Great Wolf Resorts to $7.85 per share,
above rival bidder KSL Capital Partners' most recent offer.
** Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) has agreed
to buy a 49.99 percent stake in Italian motorway operator
Atlantia's Chilean unit Grupo Costanera for about 857
million euros ($1.13 billion), the two groups said on Thursday.
** Private equity firm CVC Capital Partners is
nearing a deal to buy restructuring and consulting firm
AlixPartners for more than $1 billion, according to several
people familiar with the matter.
** Toyota Tsusho Corp, the Japanese trading
company, will buy a stake in Encana Corp's massive
coalbed methane field in southern Alberta for C$602 million
** British insurer Prudential Plc is considering
bidding for the insurance business of Thailand's Thanachart
Bank, sources said, in an around $500 million deal that would
help it better tackle arch rival AIA in the Southeast Asian
** Aspen Pharmacare will pay $263 million for
GlaxoSmithKine Plc's international over-the-counter
brands, the two companies said on Friday, giving the South
African drug maker a stronger presence in popular painkillers.
** Japanese trading conglomerate Marubeni Corp is
buying a 22 percent stake in Singapore reinsurer ACR Capital
Holdings in a move that will provide ACR with new capital, the
Singapore firm said.
ACR did not disclose the amount of Marubeni's investment,
but a source with knowledge of the matter said it will pay
around $250 million, becoming a major shareholder alongside
British private equity firm 3i,
** Gas Natural expects to conclude a deal struck
last year with Algerian state-owned gas firm Sonatrach to buy a
stake in the Algeria-Spain Medgaz pipeline, the Spanish
utility's chief executive said.
** French financier Vincent Bollore could raise his stake in
Vivendi to 5 percent, becoming the group's largest
shareholder, and possibly take a seat on its board, newspaper Le
Figaro said without citing sources.
** Germany's Merck KGaA will refrain from major
takeovers until the end of next year to focus on cost cuts and
job reduction, its chief executive said.
** BA and Iberia owner IAG said it had completed
the acquisition of Lufthansa's UK airline bmi and that
the price of the deal would be reduced after the German carrier
failed to sell two of bmi's units.
** The adviser of Esso Malaysia Bhd's minority
shareholders said on Thursday they should reject the takeover
offer by Petron Corp's unit as it was "not fair."
** If Research In Motion Ltd were to hire
an investment bank it would be to help it license its BlackBerry
software or to negotiate a strategic investment, not to help it
sell the company, a source close to RIM said on Thursday.
** Italy's No.2 insurer Fondiaria-SAI said on Thursday it
would seek improvements to a deal that would see it rescued by
peer Unipol, but a widening judicial probe into the Fondiaria
group risks complicating any agreement between the two sides.