(Adds Blackstone, Innogy, Oberbank, Impax Labs, Lufthansa; Updates Siemens)
Sept 21 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Thursday:
** Alphabet Inc’s Google said it would pay $1.1 billion for the division at Taiwan’s HTC Corp that develops the U.S firm’s Pixel smartphones - its second major foray into phone hardware after an earlier costly failure.
** Japan’s Toshiba Corp is locked in last minute discussions over “key issues” with the would-be buyers of its $18 billion memory chip business led by U.S. private equity firm Bain, potentially delaying a formal agreement on the sale.
** Siemens is in talks to merge its rail business with that of either Alstom or Bombardier and will pick a preferred partner within days for further negotiations, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters.
** Japanese chemical manufacturer Kuraray Co Ltd will buy U.S. firm Calgon Carbon Corp for $1.107 billion, Kuraray said, adding the carbon materials firm as one of its core businesses.
** Albertsons Cos Inc, one of America’s biggest supermarket chains, said it would buy meal-kit delivery service Plated, as it looks to attract more customers to its stores amid increased competition.
** Precious metals miner Hochschild Mining Plc is doubling down on efforts to find early-stage mining projects to acquire and is open to deposits that depart from its focus on silver and gold, the chief executive said.
** Irish building materials firm CRH is to buy U.S. cement maker Ash Grove Cement Co for $3.5 billion, wasting no time in using cash from a major disposal to strengthen its North American business.
** Asahi Group Holdings Ltd is ready to spend “billions of dollars” more on acquisitions, after having recently spent $11 billion to acquire beer brands across Europe from Anheuser-Busch InBev NV, a top company executive said.
** The German government denied a report that it favoured a merger of state-backed Commerzbank with France’s BNP Paribas, saying it was not in negotiations to divest its 15 percent stake in the German lender.
** Swiss stock exchange operator SIX Group has hired JPMorgan to look at options for its payments unit, including a sale worth up to 2 billion Swiss francs ($2.1 billion), sources familiar with the plans told Reuters.
** Murray Goulburn Co-operative, Australia’s largest milk processor, said it was considering several takeover approaches from suitors interested in acquiring the cooperative as a whole or some of its assets, but it had not received any formal offers.
** French publishers La Martiniere Groupe and Media-Participations announced talks over a merger that could create a group with combined revenues of more than 560 million euros ($666 million), in the latest sign of consolidation in the industry.
** Blackstone has bought German measuring technology group Schenck Process from private equity investor IK Investment Partners, the groups said.
** Innogy, Germany’s largest energy group by market value, is reviewing its troubled British retail unit Npower but currently has no plans to sell the business, Chief Executive Peter Terium told journalists.
** Oberbank said it had signed a deal with Iran, enabling it to finance new ventures there and making it one of the first European banks to do so since sanctions were eased.
** Impax Laboratories Inc is in talks to merge with privately held Amneal Pharmaceuticals LLC, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
** Lufthansa is set to pick up a large part of insolvent rival Air Berlin and easyJet is also still in the running for some assets, two sources familiar with the matter said. (Compiled by Anirban Paul and Munsif Vengattil in Bengaluru)