Quentin's Feed
May 11, 2010

Daiwa’s European bankers shed Close Brothers name

LONDON, May 11 (Reuters) – Close Brothers Corporate Finance,
(CBCF), one of Britain’s busiest outfits advising on so-called
“mid-market” dealmaking, is cutting its ties to former parent
Close Brothers, renaming itself DC Advisory Partners.

CBCF was sold last year by Close Brothers Group Plc
<CBRO.L>, the merchant bank, to a unit now wholly owned by
Japan’s Daiwa Securities <8601.T>.

May 10, 2010

Gatwick airport owner eyes second $5 bln fund -source

LONDON, May 10 (Reuters) – Gatwick airport owner Global
Infrastructure Partners (GIP) is preparing to raise a second
$5-billion fund, a person familiar with the matter said, braving
a still-tough market for infrastructure fundraising.

GIP, the owner of London’s Gatwick and City airports, has
already held informal discussions with existing and potential
investors about its plans and will kick off fundraising in
earnest in the second half of the year, the person said.

Apr 28, 2010

Expect more M&A by US buyers in Europe, says UBS

LONDON (Reuters) – Emerson Electric Co’s $1.1 billion tilt at Britain’s Chloride Group Plc could herald a pick-up in European mergers and acquisitions (M&A) by faster-recovering U.S. companies, UBS analysts said.

U.S. companies are growing in confidence, have cut debt, cannot repatriate cash without big tax bills, and often see Europe as a “home from home” that already makes up a large chunk of revenues, a research note published on Wednesday said.

Apr 26, 2010

IPO hopeful Nycomed inks lung-drug deal with Merck

LONDON, April 26 (Reuters) – Privately owned Swiss drugmaker
Nycomed [NYCMD.UL], which is aiming for an eventual IPO, has
signed up Merck & Co <MRK.N> to help sell its key lung drug
Daxas in Europe and Canada, boosting its commercial prospects.

Monday’s deal with one of the world’s biggest pharmaceutical
manufacturers is an important validation for the once-daily
tablet.

Apr 21, 2010

Schlumberger selling satellite unit GCS -sources

LONDON, April 21 (Reuters) – Schlumberger <SLB.N> is seeking
to sell a unit providing satellite dishes and other specialised
communications equipment for oil rigs, tankers, and other
hard-to-reach locations, people familiar with the matter said.

The world’s largest oilfield services company has hired
investment bank JPMorgan to help run the sale of the unit, known
as Schlumberger Global Connectivity Services (GCS), the people
said. It could interest both trade buyers and private equity
firms.

Apr 21, 2010

Citi sets up Warsaw investment banking team

LONDON, April 21 (Reuters) – Citigroup <C.N> set up a small
Warsaw-based investment banking team, seeking to capitalise on a
slew of state sell-offs and growing appetite from Polish
companies for international bond issues and merger advice.

The team adds to Citi’s existing Polish brokerage DMBH, one
of the country’s largest, and to its corporate bank, Bank
Handlowy. Citi already has local investment banking teams in
other markets such as Russia and South Africa.

Apr 20, 2010

European helicopter firm Inaer for sale -sources

LONDON/AMSTERDAM, April 20 (Reuters) – Southern European
private equity firm Investindustrial is seeking to sell
helicopter firm Grupo Inaer for as much as 675 million euros
($908 million), people familiar with the matter said on Tuesday.

Based in Spain, Inaer operates fleets of helicopters and
aeroplanes, aiding in medical emergencies, forest fire-fighting,
and maritime salvage. It also has operations in Britain, Chile,
Italy and Portugal.

Apr 19, 2010

Brazil’s Ferrous aims for London flotation-sources

LONDON, April 19 (Reuters) – Brazilian iron ore firm Ferrous
Resources Ltd is likely to combine an IPO in London in coming
months with selling a stake to a strategic partner as it seeks
finance to build its flagship mine, sources close to the
situation said on Monday.

An initial public offering (IPO) of the company, which is
developing a mine in Minas Gerais state, was expected to value
it at well over $3 billion, the sources, who asked no to be
named, told Reuters.

Apr 9, 2010
via DealZone

Dead kangaroos

Strewth!

Noble Group, the Singapore-listed commodities trader involved in the pitched battle over Australia’s Macarthur Coal, has upped the stakes in takeover trash-talking. Noble had planned to take a stake in Macarthur, as part of a deal in which Macarthur would in turn acquire Gloucester Coal.  And so it was aghast when U.S. miner Peabody Coal made a counter-offer to buy Macarthur (others are now circling). Not for Noble the plain-vanilla rejection of an offer as “derisory” — or even a sly bit of blogging — but instead, a series of bracing statements via the Singapore stock exchange.

On Monday dead kangaroos were invoked:

“The board of Macarthur reacted to [Peabody's] bid with the same enthusiasm as a lost and hungry hiker who stumbles across a road kill Roo that had been in the sun too long, and not surprisingly said “no thanks”…

Apr 8, 2010

Buyout firms flock to sale of Dubai-owned ISS

LONDON (Reuters) – About 10 buyout houses are preparing to make indicative bids on Monday for Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS), the $700 million-plus port and shipping agent owned by Dubai World’s investment arm Istithmar.

The keen interest highlights the ongoing appeal of so-called secondary buyouts, where financial investors sell each other portfolio companies, despite concerns that previous owners may have already withdrawn much of the value in a company.

    • 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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