Deals du Jour


Details emerge of the Swiss government’s disposal of 9 percent stake in UBS. Traders snapped up the 332 million shares at the top end of the expected price range in a heavily oversubscribed sale, a source told us. 

Talks over a complicated merger between telecommunications firms MTN and Bharti Airtel are extended for a second time until the end of September. As uncertainty over a successful completion drags on one shareholder we talked to said the extension showed that the deal may be too complex.

For the latest Reuters stories on M&A and investment banking, click here.

For a round-up of other stories featured in the media today take a look at our market chatter.

Deals du Jour

Reliance Communications is one of the bidders for Zain’s African operations, two banking sources with knowledge of the situation have told us. Talks over the deal — reported to be worth $10 billion — are preliminary. 

There is a queue of banks for the other big telecoms deal in the works, willing to fund Bharti Airtel’s acquisition of a stake in South Africa’s MTN, says the Economic Times. The two are in exclusive merger talks till Aug. 31.

For an overview of other stories in the papers, click here.

Deals du Jour

The logo of an Opel car dealer is pictured in Himmelkorn, near Leipzig August 9, 2009. With Magna and GM finally agreeing terms on Opel, more deals are on the horizon.

Mergers and acquisition stories in the media on Friday include:

A Canadian bank has approached Allied Irish Banks and the Irish government with a proposal to buy a stake in Allied when it has been cleansed of its risky loans, the Irish Times reported on Friday

India’s federal government will offer its 49 percent stake in Bharat Aluminium Co (Balco) to Sterlite Industries (India) Ltd for about 20 billion rupees ($416 million), the Economic Times reported on Friday.

Barclays Capital has prepared a database of more than 100 private-equity owned companies ready to be listed in the next 12 to 18 months, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

Deals du Jour

Library photo of the Prudential Center. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES)The acquisition of Friends Provident by Resolution is a reminder that financial services deals have not gone away. A steady stream of deals have made headlines in recent weeks.

On Thursday an online report said Prudential Financial Inc is in the early stages of talks with KB Financial to sell its South Korean brokerage arm, a deal that could fetch an estimated $680 million. Here’s the Reuters story.

Other deal-related stories appearing in the media on Thursday include:

State-run miner Coal India Ltd plans to raise up to 60 billion rupees ($1.25 billion) by selling 10 percent of its equity through an initial public offer expected within a year, the Business Standard reported on Thursday.

Deals du Jour

General Motors Co. Chief Executive Fritz Henderson addressses the media during a news conference at GM's Warren Technical Center in Warren, MichiganGeneral Motors’ upcoming Volt model will run up to 230 miles per gallon of fuel, but the saga to sell off its European operations seems equally long-lasting. The bidding process is now between two bidders — Magna International and RHJ International — with GM’s CFO Ray Young telling Reuters earlier that “everyone is anxious to get this thing done”.

In other M&A related stories reported by media on Wednesday:

Indian state-run explorer Oli and National Gas Corp is in talks with three Russian firms about a joint bid for a stake in YPF the Argentinean arm of Spanish oil major Repsol YPF SA, the Economic Times reported.

JP Morgan is looking to sell 23 office properties in what may be the country’s largest office real estate sale this year, the Wall Street Journal said. Here’s Reuters’ report.

Deals du Jour

library photo of A man and a security guard are reflected behind a logo of a Japan's insurance company in Tokyo November 26, 2008. Japanese life insurers are shying away from investing in U.S. Treasuries because of their falling yields, officials at the insurers said on Wednesday. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon (JAPAN)Clive Cowdery’s Resolution has won over shareholders of Friends Provident, agreeing to pay 1.86 billion pounds for the British life insurer. Here are some facts about the pair. Whether the move will lead to a wave of consolidation in the sector remains to be seen, though last week the head of rival Standard Life told Reuters that it had no plans to make any deals.

Other M&A news today includes:

The total value of distressed-debt deals totalled $84.4 billion this year, the Wall Street Journal said, almost double the figure last year. Here’s Reuters’ story.

Private equity fund Dubai International Capital and distressed debt investor Oaktree Capital have abandoned plans to team up to restructure the debts of German aluminium firm Almatis, the Financial Times said.

Deals du Jour

Buyout firm Resolution raises its offer for UK insurer Friends Provident to about 2 billion pounds, and the two sides start talks about a possible deal.

The following are M&A related stories reported by Reuters and other media:

Lloyds Banking Group may consider a multi-billion pound share issue as part of a partial withdrawal from the government’s asset protection scheme, according to a report in the Sunday Times.

U.S. power producer Dynegy will sell nine U.S. power plants to its one-time development partner LS Power Associates, the Wall Street Journal says.

Deals du Jour

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group agreed to pay $550 million to buy some Asian units from British lender Royal Bank of Scotland , taking Australia’s fourth largest bank closer to its goal of generating a fifth of its revenue from Asia by 2012, Reuters reported.

In other M&A related stories reported by Reuters and other media on Tuesday:

Miner Xstrata posted a sharp drop in profit as a result of weak metal prices and warned hopes of a quick recovery may be premature, adding it still sought a “merger of equals” with rival Anglo American, Reuters reported. But Xstrata unveiled no new initiatives related to the courtship.

HSBC Holding is in talks to set up a joint venture in China, Vincent Cheng, HSBC executive director and chairman for Asia Pacific told Reuters.

Deals du Jour

Time Warner Inc (TWX.N), which plans to spin off AOL by the end of the year, said in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that it paid $283 million for Google Inc’s (GOOG.O) 5 percent stake in AOL.

In other M&A related stories reported by Reuters and other media on Tuesday:

German flagship carrier Deutsche Lufthansa (LHAG.DE) said it has applied with the Austrian Takeover Commission to extend a deadline for a planned deal to acquire Austrian Airlines (AUAV.VI) by a month to Aug. 31. Click here for a Reuters story.

Private equity group CVC Capital Partners was prepared to offer up to 1.5 billion euros ($2.1 billion) for Anheuser-Busch InBev’s (ABI.BR) Central and Eastern European assets, ahead of a Monday deadline, newspaper De Tijd reports. The private equity firm was in talks with 13 banks, including HSBC, Unicredit and Calyon to secure a loan of at least 700 million euros. While TPG Capital was still in the running, KKR had dropped out of the proceedings.

Deals du Jour

Sweden’s Ericsson has won the race for the wireless assets of bankrupt Nortel Networks Corp, paying $1.13 billion for the crown jewels of the on-time Canadian telecom star.

In other M&A related stories reported by Reuters and other media on Monday:

Volkswagen (VLKAF.DE) is considering a 4 billion euros ($5.7 billion) capital increase to offset the credit rating impact of its merger with Porsche, Financial Times Deutschland reports.

Commerzbank (CBKG.DE) said it has sold Dresdner Bank (Switzerland) to the Liechtenstein-based LGT Group. LTG said the combined Swiss operations would manage client assets totalling almost 20 billion Swiss francs. Click here for a Reuters story.