May 23, 2014 / 10:12 AM / in 4 years

Deals of the day- Mergers and acquisitions

(Adds Archer Daniel Midlands, Etisalat, Cemex, Ecom, Generali, SSAB, Apax; Updates Greene King)

May 23 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Friday:

** Leading global agribusiness group Archer Daniels Midland Co is among the bidders for German drink and food flavours maker Wild in a deal valued at 1.5 billion euros ($2.04 billion), sources familiar with the deal said on Friday.

** Australia’s Treasury Wine Estates Ltd, the world’s No. 2 wine company, denied it was in talks to be acquired by China’s Bright Food Group Co Ltd, the latest potential suitor named in a string of media reports that have sent its share price surging.

Bright Food also denied the report of talks by the Australian Financial Review, which comes just three days after Treasury Wine rejected a A$3.1 billion ($2.9 billion) takeover bid from U.S. private equity firm KKR & Co.

** UniCredit, Italy’s biggest bank by assets, is considering the sale of more of its private equity investments managed by its German unit HypoVereinsbank (HVB), its chief executive said on Friday.

A source familiar with the matter said the value of the transaction would be around 1 billion euros ($1.37 billion).

** Troubled holding company Espirito Santo International (ESI) - a key shareholder in Portugal’s largest listed bank BES - plans asset sales and a large capital hike at its subholding Rioforte to repair its finances.

A spokesman for the Espirito Santo Group conglomerate that owns the Luxembourg-based ESI told Reuters ESI will seek a capital increase worth an estimated 1 billion euros ($1.37 billion) at Rioforte in the next two or three months.

** Japan’s Shinsei Bank Ltd and Carlyle Group are among suitors who have advanced to a final round of bidding for Standard Chartered’s Hong Kong consumer finance unit, people familiar with the matter said.

The sale of PrimeCredit, which sources have previously said could fetch between $500 million and $700 million, is one of a number of asset sales planned by Standard Chartered.

** Reliance Communications is in talks with China’s Citic Telecom over an undersea cable joint venture, the Financial Times reported, citing unnamed people familiar with the talks.

If completed, the move would create a 50-50 joint venture valuing Reliance Communications’ cable assets at $1 billion, the newspaper reported on Thursday.

** Commodities shipper BW Group and Singapore’s Pavilion Energy have agreed to form a joint venture to manage, acquire and charter liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipping assets, the companies said.

** British brewer Greene King said on Friday it had pulled out of takeover talks with pub operator Orchid Group, which is expected to fetch about 250 million pounds ($421 million).

** Property developer Sunac China Holdings Ltd said it would buy a 24.3 percent stake in Greentown China Holdings Ltd at HK$12 ($1.55) per share.

    ** HNA Group, parent company of Chinese airline Hainan Airlines, is in talks with Intesa Sanpaolo about buying some of the Italian bank’s stake in Spanish hotels group NH Hoteles, it said.

    ** Etisalat, which this month bought a 53 percent stake in Maroc Telecom, has scrapped an offer to buy the remaining shares in the Moroccan firm, the United Arab Emirates operator said on Friday.

    ** Mexican cement maker Cemex said on Friday it expected the planned merger between its rivals Lafarge SA and Holcim Ltd to be broadly positive for the industry, and is open to exploring acquisitions that may result from it.

    ** The merger of law firms Patton Boggs and Squire Sanders, which hit a snag on Thursday, was headed for a final vote on Friday, despite concerns about the role of Patton Boggs in the long-running dispute between Chevron Corp and a group of Ecuadorean villagers.

    ** Apax is to sell its majority stake in foreign exchange operator Travelex (IPO-TUL.L) to Dr Shetty, the owner of the UAE Exchange, and Abu Dhabi firm Centurion Investments, the private equity group said on Friday.

    ** Swiss agricultural trader Ecom gained European Union regulatory approval on Friday to buy Britain’s Armajaro Holdings’ coffee and cocoa trading arm which will reinforce its position as one of the world’s biggest dealers in these commodities.

    ** Italian insurer Generali is looking to leave the investment grouping through which it jointly controls Italy’s biggest phone group Telecom Italia as early as June, its chairman said on Friday.

    ** European Union antitrust regulators will decide by July 1 whether to clear Swedish steelmaker SSAB’s acquisition of Finnish peer Rautaruukki Corp, the European Commission said on Friday.

    ** The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, one of the world’s biggest dealmakers, said it is hard to find good deals because most assets are fully priced, but it will be patient and focus on emerging markets to find deals that offer long-term value. ($1 = 7.75 Hong Kong Dollars) ($1 = 0.73 Euros) ($1 = 0.59 British Pounds) (Compiled by Anannya Pramanick and Sampad Patnaik in Bangalore)

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