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Jul 27, 2010

Tomkins backs $4.5 billion Canadian bid

LONDON (Reuters) – Tomkins Plc, the British maker of car parts, industrial hoses and bath tubs, backed a 2.9 billion pound ($4.5 billion) takeover offer from Canadian investors that would be the year’s largest leveraged buyout.

Tomkins said a trio of investors owning more than 9 percent had also formally backed the $4.5 billion offer from Onex, Canada’s largest private equity firm, and the C$127 billion Canada Pension Plan, the country’s second-biggest pension fund.

Jul 27, 2010

Tomkins backs $4.5 bln Canadian bid, year’s top LBO

LONDON, July 27 (Reuters) – Tomkins Plc (TOMK.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the
British maker of car parts, industrial hoses and bath tubs,
backed a 2.9 billion pound ($4.5 billion) takeover offer from
Canadian investors that would be the year’s largest leveraged
buyout.

Tomkins said a trio of investors owning more than 9 percent
had also formally backed the $4.5 billion offer from Onex,
Canada’s largest private equity firm, and the C$127 billion
Canada Pension Plan, the country’s second-biggest pension fund.

Jul 26, 2010

Lion to buy Picard in biggest French LBO since 2008

LONDON (Reuters) – BC Partners agreed to sell French frozen-food firm Picard Surgeles to rival Lion Capital, highlighting the keen appetite of private equity firms to strike deals in the recession-resilient food industry.

The sale of Picard, which has thrived by persuading France’s fastidious consumers that convenience food can be high-quality, is the country’s biggest leveraged buyout (LBO) since the September 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers.

Jul 23, 2010

Advent-Bain near purchase of RBS WorldPay: sources

LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Bank of Scotland is in exclusive talks with Advent International and Bain Capital over the sale of its payment-processing unit WorldPay, two people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The private equity duo have about a week’s exclusivity to finalize a deal for the business, which handles about half of all face-to-face debit and credit card transactions in Britain, one of the people said.

Jul 23, 2010

Condoms, car parts, oilfields spice up UK M&A

LONDON (Reuters) – A string of takeovers has enlivened Britain’s near-moribund mergers and acquisitions (M&A) landscape this week, highlighting pent-up demand for deals among cash-rich corporations and private equity firms.

The timing of such a flurry of activity masks months of work behind the scenes or represents a rush to conclude transactions before the August lull, but it supports the argument made by analysts at JPMorgan Cazenove, Morgan Stanley, Standard & Poor’s, UBS and others, that many of the conditions are in place for a revival in European M&A.

Jul 22, 2010

ISS owners eyeing IPO or sale: sources

LONDON (Reuters) – The owners of Danish cleaning firm ISS ISSHG.UL have revived plans for a multi-billion euro flotation, asking banks to pitch for roles helping to list or sell the company, three people familiar with the matter said.

ISS is the latest amongst a number of big European companies owned by private equity firms that are gearing up to change hands or return to public markets, as their owners seek to profit from long-held investments.

Jul 22, 2010

Icelandic tycoon strikes debt deal with Deutsche

LONDON, July 22 (Reuters) – Icelandic drugmaker Actavis and
owner Bjorgolfur Thor Bjorgolfsson have agreed a refinancing
deal with lenders led by Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) to slash its
billions of euros in debt and restructure the tycoon’s personal
debts.

The agreement, struck after more than a year of talks, moves
Deutsche closer to solving the headache posed by its largest
block of risky loans held over from pre-credit crisis days.

Jul 22, 2010

Exclusive: ISS owners eyeing IPO or sale, sources say

LONDON (Reuters) – The owners of Danish cleaning firm ISS have revived plans for a multi-billion euro flotation, asking banks to pitch for roles helping to list or sell the company, three people familiar with the matter said.

The owners — Goldman Sachs Capital Partners and Swedish private equity fund EQT Partners — are seeking to start a dual-track process toward an initial public offering (IPO) or sale later this year, the sources said.

Jul 15, 2010

Field narrows for Bain’s TeamSystem -sources

LONDON, July 15 (Reuters) – Private equity firm Advent
International is out of the race for Italian software firm
TeamSystem, sources familiar with the situation said, leaving a
narrowing field of buyout bidders facing off against trade rival
Sage (SGE.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

Advent, Cinven [CINV.UL] and HG Capital had all submitted
indicative bids for TeamSystem, being sold by rival buyout firm
Bain Capital. Second round bids are due towards the end of the
month. [ID:nLDE6671KR]

Jul 9, 2010

Is private equity ready to get hands dirty again?

LONDON (Reuters) – Post-Lehman, European private equity has all but ignored the grimier end of life: the widget-makers, chemicals plants and facilities scrubbers that used to be mainstays of the buyout business.

But that may be about to change.

Debt for new deals has become less scarce and a bit cheaper. Industrial demand has staged a big recovery. And some funds are itching to take profits by offloading long-held portfolio firms, either to each other or public markets.

    • 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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