(Adds EDF, Furiex, Barry Callebaut, and Vale)
Feb 19 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2100 GMT on Wednesday:
** France’s EDF is seeking to sell 70 percent of the renewable energy asset portfolio held by its Italian unit Edison, three sources close to the matter said on Wednesday. The sources said Italian infrastructure fund F2i, UK-based Terra Firma and U.S. fund First Reserve were interested in buying stakes.
** Furiex Pharmaceuticals Inc, which is developing a drug for irritable bowel syndrome, has put itself up for sale, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday, citing people with knowledge of the matter.
** Barry Callebaut, has acquired the remaining 51 percent of Biolands Group, a certified cocoa bean supplier in Africa, the company said on Wednesday, the latest effort to secure long-term bean supplies to meet rising demand.
** Vale SA may sell a $4 billion potash fertilizer project in Brazil’s northeastern state of Sergipe if it is unable to reach a tax accord with municipal authorities, Chief Executive Officer Murilo Ferreira said on Wednesday.
** Devon Energy Corp said it would sell some liquids-rich natural gas assets in Canada to Canadian Natural Resources Ltd for about $2.8 billion.
** Royal Dutch Shell Plc has sold its downstream Australian assets to Dutch-owned oil trader Vitol SA and the Abu Dhabi Investment Council for about A$2.4 billion ($2.2 billion), The Australian Financial Review reported.
** China’s Dongfeng Motor Group Co said it would invest 800 million euros ($1.1 billion) in French carmaker Peugeot SA via a share sale and rights issue while France’s government does the same, confirming a Reuters report.
** State-backed Royal Bank of Scotland Group said it had sold some structured retail investor products and equity derivatives businesses to France’s BNP Paribas. RBS said the consideration was not material but the deal would transfer the management of up to 15 billion pounds ($25 billion) of liabilities.
** Finnish stainless steelmaker Outokumpu Oyj has raised its stake in the planned Fennovoima nuclear reactor to 12.5 percent from an original goal of 10 percent. Outokumpu said its investment in Fennovoima, to be paid over the next decade, would be around 210 million euros, compared with its earlier estimate of around 150 to 200 million euros.
** Standard Chartered Plc is seeking buyers for a Hong Kong consumer finance business worth $500 million to $700 million, according to people familiar with the matter, as the Asia-focused lender sells off peripheral businesses.
** Kay Jewelers parent Signet Jewelers Ltd agreed to buy smaller rival Zale Corp for about $690 million, cementing its position as the largest North American jewelry chain.
** Seek Ltd, which runs Australia’s biggest online job ads site by number of clicks, said it would buy the online employment businesses of Malaysian associate Jobstreet Corp Bhd for 1.73 billion ringgit ($523.69 million).
** Offshore services firm EOC Ltd has sold a pipe laying and heavy lift construction vessel to a unit of ICBC Financial Leasing for $200 million and will lease back the ship for 10 years, the Oslo listed company said.
** Suez Environnement has bought GDF Suez’s 3.95 percent stake in Rome-based utility Acea SpA , taking its own shareholding to 12.5 percent as it seeks to grow its European water business in Italy.
** Sinopec Corp, Asia’s largest oil refiner, plans to restructure its retail and wholesale business and sell up to 30 percent of the unit as China’s government promotes private investment in the country’s oil industry.
** China’s Tencent Holdings Ltd has bought 20 percent of Dianping, the country’s largest restaurant review and business listing site, as the social media leader lands a blow in Chinese Internet firms’ battle to link online content with offline services.
** Onexim, the holding company of Russian tycoon-turned-politician Mikhail Prokhorov, may sell its stake in energy firm Quadra to electricity company InterRAO and France’s EDF, the Vedomosti newspaper said.
** The owners of Finland’s Paroc are expected to launch a sale of the insulation material maker which could fetch more than 650 million euros, three sources familiar with the matter said.
** MOL Global Pte Ltd, a Malaysian online payment firm controlled by billionaire Vincent Tan, said the sultan of the southern state of Johor will buy a 15 percent stake in its operating unit, MOL AccessPortal Sdn Bhd, for $120 million.
($1 = 0.5989 British pounds)
($1 = 0.7272 euros)
($1 = 3.3035 Malaysian ringgit)
($1 = 1.1071 Australian Dollars)
$1=6.9611 Egyptian pounds Compiled by Shivani Mody and Anannya Pramanick in Bangalore