M & A wrap: Stepping into China

Private equity firms, like Richard Ong’s RRJ Capital, are stepping into China where hedge funds once roamed, pursuing deals that look more like short term financing than long term growth bets.

Rising buyouts between China and Japan, abundant leveraged debt in the region and the depth of China’s markets mean Asia-Pacific private equity will continue to outperform the Western model, leading Asia fund managers said.

Warren Buffett’s new manager will see higher taxes and get less pay at his new job, reports the NYT.

“AT&T was sued by Cellular South, the ninth-largest wireless carrier by customers, in an effort to block its acquisition of T-Mobile based on claims their combined market power violates U.S. antitrust laws,” reports Bloomberg.

For your morning distraction:  Netflix split off its DVD service to a separate website called Qwikster but it turns out a guy with a pot-smoking Elmo avatar already uses the Qwikster Twitter account name. “Man so much to plan so much deal so much negotiation n I want a plan when I still have part of it n stiL be making bank” tweets @Qwikster.

M & A wrap: Hulu auction at risk

The auction of online video site Hulu has been slowed by recent developments which could derail it completely, according to sources familiar with the process.

Diversified manufacturer Tyco is moving to separate its businesses into three independent publicly traded companies, becoming the latest U.S. conglomerate to do so.

Consumer groups will try to convince the Federal Reserve this week that rubber stamping the Capital One takeover of ING’s online banking unit would prove that “too big to fail” is alive and well.

M & A wrap: Who’s interested in Yahoo?

Private equity firm Silver Lake is considering a bid for Internet firm Yahoo, according to media reports.

Fifteen Democratic lawmakers asked the Obama administration to approve AT&T’s proposed purchase of T-Mobile USA.

Duncan Niederauer’s embrace of Deutsche Boerse is transforming NYSE Euronext’s “merger of equals” into the worst takeover in America, reports Bloomberg.

M & A wrap: Groupon’s back on track

Groupon seeks to go public in October or November, people familiar with the matter told the New York Times, a week after the daily deals website put its IPO on hold for a few weeks as it waited to ride out global market turmoil.

Rather than wasting time and money with a costly takeover battle with Ralcorp and its strong takeover defenses, ConAgra may soon look at other deals in the private-label business, a source familiar with the situation said.

“A range of major players interested in acquiring all or a large piece of Yahoo have been prepping possible bids and have been in touch with the Internet giant’s board over the last several days,” reports AllThingD.

M & A wrap: Moody’s cuts French banks

Moody’s cut the credit ratings of two French banks because of their exposure to Greece’s debt, highlighting growing risks to Europe’s financial sector from a deepening euro zone sovereign debt crisis. In an opinion piece, the WSJ reports the French financial system maintains too close a relationship to the state.

Google raised its offer for Motorola by 33 percent to $12.5 billion over two weeks of negotiations between the two companies, according to a regulatory filing.

The chief executive of Anglo American, Cynthia Carroll, has downplayed speculation that the miner is on the hunt for acquisitions, the Financial Times reports.

M & A wrap: Negotiating the split

McGraw-Hill is planning to split itself into two public companies with one focusing on its credit rating business and the other on textbooks and educational products. Which company will be the better investment?

“Under pressure from investors to fix the ailing McGraw-Hill Cos., Chief Executive Officer Harold “Terry” McGraw III disregarded his family’s legacy when deciding to break up the business founded in 1888,” reports Bloomberg in a profile of the CEO.

Hewlett-Packard has extended the deadline for its $11.2 billion takeover of British software company Autonomy, with analysts predicting the U.S. firm is on course to succeed.

from Breakingviews:

Forget the IPO, Facebook could reverse into Yahoo

By Rob Cox
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Now that Yahoo has fired its chief executive, anything could happen to the rudderless Internet hodgepodge. Private equity firms, one of Yahoo's founders and even AOL are said to be mulling bids. But consider a more radical option: a takeover by the rival most responsible for Yahoo's fall from grace -- Facebook.

It's of course easy to marshal arguments why Facebook's creator, Mark Zuckerberg, should avoid staining his company Yahoo purple. The social network is already growing rapidly. Revenue doubled in the first half to $1.6 billion with profit of nearly half a billion.

M & A wrap: HSBC Holdings to sell unit

HSBC Holdings  has launched the sale of its non-life insurance business, sources told Reuters, a global division worth about $1 billion and now part of the bank’s plan to strip away non-core units.

Suzuki Motor wants to end its two-year-old alliance with Volkswagen after the German carmaker accused it of violating their partnership pact by agreeing a diesel engine deal with Italy’s Fiat.

“Much of the blame for Yahoo Inc.’s lack of revenue growth in recent years fell on Chief Executive Carol Bartz. Now, that investor angst has shifted to Yahoo Chairman Roy Bostock,” reports the WSJ.

M & A wrap: Regulating foreign defense M&A

U.S. regulators are increasingly taking a tougher stand on foreign takeovers in the defense sector to protect technology designed to deal with the growing and unseen threats of the cyber age, senior industry dealmakers said at the Reuters Aerospace and Defense Summit this week.

Ticonderoga Securities cut boutique investment bank Lazard to “neutral” from “buy,” saying U.S. and European debt concerns and tougher regulation of large deals would hurt recovery in merger activity.

Shares of Volkswagen and Porsche slipped on Friday, as the automakers’ merger plans faced difficulties, reports DealBook.

M & A wrap: AstraZeneca in the mood for a deal?

AstraZeneca may decide to make a big acquisition if it fails to improve the flow of new drugs from its pipeline and its $10 billion cash pile hints at a desire to keep strategic options open, according to an analyst report.

The Washington Post has lost money for three years and some shareholders of owner The Washington Post Co wouldn’t weep if the paper were sold, allowing the company to focus on its for-profit education and cable businesses, write  Sruthi Ramakrishnan and A. Ananthalakshmi.

Singapore Exchange’s  coup in luring Manchester United to the city is threatening to turn sour as the bourse comes under fire for plans to let the club list using a structure that will minimize the influence of new shareholders.