(Adds Xerox, General Electric, Schlumberger, Flipkart, Biogen, Cirsa, Envirotainer, Alvogen, AccorHotels and ArcelorMittal; updates Innogy, Fidessa, TransUnion and Shire)
April 20 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Friday: ** Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceutical nudged up its offer for Shire to 44.3 billion pounds ($62 billion) to try to persuade the rare-disease drugs specialist into talks after it rejected three previous proposals. ** General Electric Co said it was still considering a potential breakup of the 126-year-old industrial conglomerate, but such a move was secondary to running its businesses better. ** Biogen Inc struck a $1 billion neurology drug development deal with Ionis Pharmaceuticals, expanding a partnership that developed the company’s potential blockbuster drug for spinal muscular atrophy. ** Walmart Inc could seal a deal to buy a more than 51 percent stake in Indian online marketplace Flipkart as early as next week, two sources familiar with the matter said. ** Xerox Corp and Fujifilm Holdings are in active talks to renegotiate a deal the two struck in January, CNBC reported, citing comments made by the companies’ lawyers at a court hearing on Thursday. ** The private equity funds of Blackstone and Apollo are the only two bidders left in the sale of Spanish gaming hall operator Cirsa, raising doubts about whether the sale will go ahead, sources familiar with the matter said. ** Oilfield services provider Schlumberger NV said it was looking to monetize some assets in its production management business and was “fully expecting to engage” with interested parties over the next few quarters. ** ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steelmaker, is on track to win EU antitrust clearance to acquire Italian peer Ilva after agreeing to sell a number of significant assets across Europe, two people familiar with the matter said. ** Generics firm Alvogen is putting its Central and Eastern European (CEE) operations up for sale as its private equity owners seek a step-by-step exit from the maker of drugs against cancer, heart and lung diseases, people close to the matter said. ** European private equity investor AAC Capital is launching the sale of Envirotainer, a Swedish company that rents out containers for shipping temperature-sensitive healthcare products, three sources familiar with the matter said. ** AccorHotels, Europe’s biggest hotel group, will make further acquisitions in coming years, using cash from the sale of a majority stake in its property business rather than paying a special dividend, its chief executive said. ** Investor Macquarie is interested in some assets of German energy firm Innogy, two people familiar with the matter said, potentially disrupting plans by parent RWE to break up the group with rival E.ON . ** British financial trading systems firm Fidessa has ditched a takeover by Swiss banking software business Temenos in favour of a 1.5 billion-pound ($2.1 billion) deal with rival bidder Ion. ** U.S. credit reporting agency TransUnion said it will buy UK consumer data provider Callcredit for 1 billion pounds ($1.4 billion) from private equity firm GTCR, expanding its operations into Europe for the first time. ** Bertelsmann’s call centre unit Arvato, going on the block before the summer break as the German media group seeks to free up capital to invest, is attracting interest from peers, mostly backed by private equity, sources close to the matter said. ** Private equity firm Yorktown Partners is selling its Egyptian-focused oil and gas company Merlon International, hoping to raise up to $400 million, two banking sources told Reuters. ** Talks aimed at a tie-up between planemakers Boeing Co and Embraer SA that also involve Brazil’s government are at an advanced stage, O Estado de S. Paulo newspaper reported, citing unnamed sources. ** The U.S. Treasury is considering ways to restrict sensitive Chinese investments in the United States by invoking an emergency powers law and bringing forward some security review reforms for corporate acquisitions, a senior Treasury official said on Thursday. ** E-commerce titan Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has bought a Chinese microchip maker to further its cloud-based “internet of things” (IoT) business, underscoring its commitment to the chip industry, an Alibaba spokeswoman said. ** French property group Fonciere des Regions said it was in talks to buy out Italian subsidiary Beni Stabili , in the European property market’s latest merger move. ** Russia’s antitrust regulator FAS has approved Bayer’s planned takeover of Monsanto, the German drugs and crop chemicals maker said, as it enters the home stretch to closing the $62.5 billion deal. ** Insurance Australia Group is set to sell its four Southeast Asian businesses in deals that could be valued at about $500 million, under a review of its Asian operations, three people with knowledge of the matter said. ** Cash-strapped Fortis Healthcare Ltd said Fosun International Ltd has offered to invest up to $350 million, making the Chinese firm the fourth suitor aiming to tap soaring demand for private healthcare in India. ** Angola’s state-run oil firm Sonangol is inviting bids for stakes in two offshore oil blocks in Africa’s second-largest crude producer, Sonangol said. ** Foresight Solar Fund Ltd said it has bought a portfolio of five operational solar parks in Britain with an installed capacity of 53.3 megawatts. ** South Africa construction company Murray & Roberts (M&R) said that an independent board had recommended that its shareholders reject a takeover bid by Germany’s ATON, the latest rebuff to the acquisition attempt. ** French container shipping company CMA CGM said it would buy a stake of around 25 percent in Ceva Logistics, which is being listed on the Swiss stock market. ** Connecticut Water Service Inc said on Thursday it had rejected a $748 million takeover bid by Eversource Energy , New England’s largest power utility, aimed at disrupting its merger with SJW Group agreed in March. ** Activist investor Jana Partners disclosed a 9.1 percent stake in Pinnacle Foods Inc and said it would seek talks with the company on a range of subjects including a possible sale of the packaged foods maker. ** Brazil’s state-controlled oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA on Thursday received three binding bids for its gas pipeline network company TAG, three sources with knowledge of the matter said. ** AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson said on Thursday his company’s bid to buy movie and TV show maker Time Warner would allow the two firms to serve customers better by lowering pay TV rates, rejecting government arguments the deal would raise consumer prices. ** Brazil’s state-run oil company is nearing a deal in which China National Petroleum Corp Ltd (CNPC) would invest in an oil refinery in exchange for crude oil, two people with knowledge of the talks told Reuters, potentially giving China its first refining capacity in the Americas. (Compiled by Ahmed Farhatha and Akshara P in Bengaluru)
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