May 7, 2014 / 10:01 AM / 4 years ago

Deals of the day- Mergers and acquisitions

(Adds Ciech, Zain, Gannett, Toshiba, Bilfinger, updates Kroton Educacional, Mondelez, AstraZeneca)

May 7 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Wednesday:

** Japan’s SoftBank Corp said it would not sell any of its shares in Chinese online commerce company Alibaba Group Holding Ltd IPO-ALIB.N, which is preparing for what could be the largest market debut by a technology company in history.

** Britain will continue to speak with U.S. drugmaker Pfizer Inc and British pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca Plc about a potential takeover, but any deal is a commercial decision, Prime Minister David Cameron’s spokesman said.

Separately, Finance Minister George Osborne said the government would support a possible takeover of AstraZeneca by Pfizer, provided such a deal delivered jobs for Britons.

AstraZeneca, fighting Pfizer’s $106 billion bid approach, is talking to other companies as it seeks a partnering deal for its experimental Alzheimer’s drug.

** French engineering group Alstom SA has more interest in General Electric Co’s rail signaling activities than its freight train business, Chief Executive Patrick Kron said on Wednesday.

Toshiba Corp will offer to buy Alstom’s power grid business for “several hundred billion yen” if GE completes its planned purchase of Alstom’s energy business, the Nikkei newspaper reported.

** The chief executive of Siemens AG said on Wednesday that the German conglomerate would take its time to study the business of French rival Alstom SA before deciding on a formal offer and not be forced into a bid.

** Czech oil company Unipetrol will analyze whether to acquire a minority stake in its own Ceska Rafinerska unit once it receives an offer from Italy’s ENI, the current owner of the stake, Unipetrol’s owner said on Wednesday.

** HeidelbergCement could seize opportunities to snap up assets from rivals Lafarge and Holcim , which may be forced into disposals to get the go-ahead from regulators for their planned merger.

** Kroton Educacional SA and Anhanguera Educacional Participacoes SA, which last year agreed to merge to form the world’s largest for-profit education company, agreed on Wednesday to change the terms of their deal to overcome some market and regulatory hurdles.

** Canada’s largest natural gas company Encana Corp said on Wednesday it is buying producing assets in the Eagle Ford shale field in Texas from Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold for $3.1 billion, nearly doubling its oil output.

** Mondelez International Inc and rival D.E Master Blenders 1753, who make Kenco and Douwe Egberts brands respectively, will join up in a deal that creates the world’s biggest pure-play coffee company to take on market leader Nestle .

** Kuwait’s Zain has upped its stake in its Bahraini subsidiary to 63 percent after buying a further 6.25 percent for $12.5 million, the telecom firm said, allowing it to retain majority control after the unit’s stock market listing.

** The top investor in Italian white goods maker Indesit is continuing to assess a possible tie-up, Indesit Chief Executive Marco Milani said on Wednesday.

** Austrian property group Conwert has decided not to pursue an offer it got for its German portfolio, the majority of its business, its chief executive said on Wednesday.

** German builder Hochtief said on Wednesday it was on track to increase its stake in Australian company Leighton.

Hochtief is aiming to increase its holding in Australia’s biggest builder to around 74 percent, from the 59 percent it currently owns.

** Bulgaria’s Corporate Commercial Bank received approval from the central bank on Wednesday to acquire the Bulgarian division of Credit Agricole.

** French investment group Wendel said it raised about 1 billion euros ($1.39 billion) from the sale of a 4.3 percent stake in Saint-Gobain, Europe’s biggest supplier of construction materials.

** Spanish oil major Repsol bid farewell on Wednesday to 15 years of business in Argentina with the $1.3 billion sale of a stake in energy firm YPF, opening a new era that is likely to focus on acquisitions.

** Hungarian oil and gas group MOL has agreed to buy Italian oil and gas firm Eni’s Czech, Slovak and Romanian units including 208 filling stations, MOL announced on Wednesday.

** PT Semen Indonesia Tbk, Indonesia’s biggest cement producer, has agreed to buy a minority stake in a cement maker in Myanmar.

** ITV, Britain’s biggest commercial free-to-air broadcaster, has agreed to buy a controlling stake in U.S. reality producer Leftfield Entertainment for an initial payment of $360 million.

** Qatar’s struggling property developer Barwa Real Estate said on Wednesday that it was selling Barwa City project to the property arm of the country’s sovereign wealth for 7.57 billion riyals ($2.08 billion).

** Ting Hsin International Group, parent of Chinese noodle maker Tingyi Holding, and Foxconn Technology Group have launched rival bids for small Taiwanese mobile telecoms operator Asia Pacific Telecom Co, a source with direct knowledge of the matter said on Wednesday.

** The Polish unit of ING Groep has signed a letter of intent to sell its remaining 20 percent stake in local pension fund ING PTE to ING Continental Europe Holdings for 242 million zlotys ($80.3 million), giving ING CEH full control over Poland’s largest pension fund.

** Denmark’s biggest listed lender Danske Bank denied a Swedish newspaper report on Tuesday it was planning to sell its Swedish and Norwegian operations, saying they were core to the bank’s operations.

** The former boss of Australia’s Gloucester Coal has lined up $200 million from a private equity firm to buy metallurgical coal projects in Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia, taking advantage of weak valuations in the sector.

** Germany’s Siemens said it signed an agreement to enter a joint venture with Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to provide “plants, products and services for the iron, steel and aluminum industry”.

** Britain’s Rolls-Royce Plc said it would sell its energy gas turbine and compressor business to Siemens AG for 785 million pounds ($1.33 billion).

** Radian Group Inc, the biggest U.S. private mortgage insurer, said it would buy loan review firm Clayton Holdings LLC for $305 million to boost its presence in the industry.

** Information technology consulting company Presidio Inc has tapped Barclays Plc and Credit Suisse Group AG to explore an initial public offering or a sale that could value the company at close to $1.5 billion, several people familiar with the matter said.

** Spain’s Telefonica said on Tuesday it had made a 725-million-euro ($1 billion) binding bid for a controlling stake in the pay-TV business of Prisa, the indebted local media group that publishes El Pais newspaper.

** Devon Energy Corp said on Tuesday that it acquired 50,000 acres and some production in the Cana-Woodford Shale in Oklahoma for $249 million in cash from Cimarex Energy Co.

** Poland’s treasury minister said on Wednesday that the price offered for the state’s stake in chemical group Ciech by Poland’s richest man Jan Kulczyk does not reflect the market’s valuation and the company’s potential.

** Zain has bought a 6.25 percent stake in its Bahraini subsidiary from Vodafone for $12.5 million, upping the Kuwaiti firm’s stake to 63 percent which will allow it to retain majority control after the unit’s stock market listing.

** Gannett Co Inc, one of the newspaper owners of, is exploring a bid for all of the auto sales website and has discussed teaming up with private equity firms in a deal that could reach $3 billion, people familiar with the matter said.

** German engineering and services group Bilfinger SE on Wednesday said it will sell significant portions of its civil engineering business. ($1 = 0.72 euros) ($1 = 3.64 Qatar riyals) ($1 = 3.01 Polish zlotys) ($1 = 0.59 British pounds) (Compiled by Avik Das and Ankit Ajmera in Bangalore)

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