Quentin's Feed
Mar 1, 2011

PPL nears deal to buy E.ON’s UK grids, source says

LONDON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. power firm PPL Corp (PPL.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is close to buying German utility E.ON AG’s (EONGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) UK power networks, beating off its main rival, Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-Shing, a person familiar with the matter said.

The person added that a deal could be announced this week. Li was seeking to add Britain’s second-biggest electricity distribution network to the largest, which he bought last year from EDF of France.

Mar 1, 2011

Glencore IPO trailer highlights valuation dilemma

LONDON (Reuters) – Valuing Glencore GLEN.UL is the biggest conundrum facing equity analysts as the Swiss commodity trader spends a second day explaining its business ahead of what could be London’s biggest IPO.

People familiar with the situation said leading mining analysts were again locked in briefings with senior officials from the company, which is simultaneously the world’s biggest commodity trader, a sizeable miner, and a big investor.

Mar 1, 2011

Analysts grapple with Glencore as trader trails IPO

LONDON, March 1 (Reuters) – Leading mining analysts will
spend a second day in lengthy briefings with senior Glencore
[GLEN.UL] executives on Tuesday, seeking to understand a
partnership that is simultaneously the world’s biggest
commodity trader, a sizeable miner, and a big investor.

Top officials from the Swiss firm would spend another day
in London meeting with equity analysts, said people familiar
with the situation, who declined to be named. The briefings
come as Glencore ponders whether to press ahead with what could
become London’s biggest-ever initial public offering (IPO).

Feb 28, 2011

Glencore primes analysts as IPO talk heats up

LONDON (Reuters) – Glencore GLEN.UL, the world’s largest commodities trader, is briefing analysts ahead of a possible flotation that could be one of the biggest listings ever seen in London, sources familiar with the situation said.

If it goes ahead, an initial public offering (IPO) of Glencore could value the company at as much as $60 billion, according to Liberum Capital estimates.

Feb 24, 2011

U.S. hedge fund Taconic takes $250 million BSkyB stake

LONDON (Reuters) – Taconic Capital Advisors, the $7 billion (4 billion pounds)-plus New York hedge fund, has taken a significant stake in Rupert Murdoch’s buyout target, British Sky Broadcasting Group Plc (BSY.L: Quote, Profile, Research), regulatory filings this week show.

Murdoch’s News Corp (NWSA.O: Quote, Profile, Research) is seeking to buy the 61 percent of BSkyB it does not already own, and is waiting to hear from Britain’s government if it will be able to avoid a full, six-month competition inquiry. [ID:nLDE7040N6] Taconic has bought more than 20.7 million shares in BSkyB, giving it a stake of about 1.1814 percent, the latest filing, made on Thursday, shows. At Thursday’s closing price of 757.5 pence, the stake is worth about 156.86 million pounds ($254.3 million), according to Reuters calculations.

Feb 24, 2011

U.S. hedge fund Taconic takes $250m BSkyB stake

LONDON, Feb 24 (Reuters) – Taconic Capital Advisors, the $7
billion-plus New York hedge fund, has taken a significant stake
in Rupert Murdoch’s buyout target, British Sky Broadcasting
Group Plc (BSY.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), regulatory filings this week show.

Murdoch’s News Corp (NWSA.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is seeking to buy the 61
percent of BSkyB it does not already own, and is waiting to hear
from Britain’s government if it will be able to avoid a full,
six-month competition inquiry. [ID:nLDE7040N6]
Taconic has bought more than 20.7 million shares in BSkyB,
giving it a stake of about 1.1814 percent, the latest filing,
made on Thursday, shows. At Thursday’s closing price of 757.5
pence, the stake is worth about 156.86 million pounds ($254.3
million), according to Reuters calculations.

Feb 23, 2011

About 20 bidders circle AstraZeneca unit: sources

LONDON (Reuters) – About 20 bidders are readying offers for all or parts of Astra Tech, the dental and medical devices unit that AstraZeneca Plc (AZN.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) hopes could fetch $2 billion, people familiar with the matter said.

Astra Tech, which had revenues last year of $535 million, is the world’s third-biggest dental implant maker behind Switzerland’s Straumann Holding (STMN.S: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Nobel Biocare Holding (NOBN.VX: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz). It also sells medical devices, focusing chiefly on urology.

Feb 22, 2011

Vattenfall readies $4 bln in sell-offs – sources

LONDON/AMSTERDAM, Feb 22 (Reuters) – Vattenfall AB ,
Europe’s fifth-largest electricity producer, has hired
investment banks to sell businesses worth more than 3 billion
euros ($4.1 billion), people familiar with the matter said.
The state-owned Swedish power giant has been reviewing
“non-core” businesses since September, as it looks to boost
profitability partly by reversing a decade of overseas
expansion.

Vattenfall [VATN.UL] wants to bolster its balance sheet, cut
carbon emissions and sharpen its focus on three key markets –
Sweden, Germany and the Netherlands.

Feb 16, 2011

Banks may split $125mln in Sanofi-Genzyme M&A fees

LONDON/PHILADELPHIA, Feb 16 (Reuters) – Banks including
Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan stand to earn up to $125 million in
fees after Sanofi-Aventis SA (SASY.PA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) finally clinched a $20.1
billion-plus deal to buy Genzyme Corp (GENZ.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).
[ID:nLDE71F046]

Sanofi’s banks may earn $50 million to $60 million for
their mergers and acquisitions (M&A) advice, while Genzyme’s
financial advisers could make $53 million to $65 million,
according to estimates by Freeman & Co, a consultancy.

Feb 16, 2011

Sanofi, Genzyme banks may split $125 million in M&A fees

LONDON/PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) – Banks including Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan stand to earn as much as $125 million in fees after Sanofi-Aventis SA finally clinched a $20.1 billion-plus deal to buy Genzyme Corp.

Sanofi’s banks may earn $50 to $60 million in fees for their mergers and acquisitions (M&A) advice, while Genzyme’s financial advisers could make $53 to $65 million, according to estimates from Freeman & Co, a consultancy.

    • About Quentin

      "Quentin Webb is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist, covering mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and private equity. He is based in London. Before becoming a columnist, he was a news reporter for Reuters, where he was most recently European M&A correspondent. He has also worked as a correspondent in Brussels and as a credit-markets reporter. He joined Reuters in 2003 from Legalease, a legal publisher. He has a first-class degree in psychology from University College London."
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