DealZone

Deals du Jour

Lovefilm, love private equity?

British mail order DVD rental company Lovefilm is in talks with private equity firms including KKR and Silver Lake Partners about buying out existing shareholders and providing support for expansion, the Financial Times reports, citing people with direct knowledge of the strategy.

Elsewhere in the media:
* Bain Capital and PAI Partners have both made offers for about 30 percent of Italian eyewear maker Safilo Group and the potential deal might also include an option to acquire a majority holding at a later date, the FT reports.

* Winkworth, the London estate agency, plans to float on the Alternative Investment Market in the autumn, the Times says.

* Anheuser-Busch Inbev, the world’s largest brewer, is considering divesting its central European operations involving 11 breweries in seven countries, reckons Belgian newspaper Le Soir.

* Spain’s Santander is targeting bank acquisitions in the United States in the next five years, its chief executive was quoted as saying in Expansion.

Deals du Jour

British bank Barclays said it would sell its BGI investment arm to U.S. firm BlackRock for $13.5 billion, creating the world’s biggest asset manager. For today’s headlines, click here.

And in the media:

* Malaysian gaming group Genting is in partnership talks with U.S. casino operator MGM Mirage, the Wall Street Journal reported. 

* British boiler maker Baxi is close to agreeing a 1.7 billion euros ($2.4 billion) merger with smaller Dutch rival De Dietrich Remeha Group, the Financial Times reported. 

Deals du Jour

Australian miner OZ Minerals said its shareholders approved the sweetened $1.4 billion deal by  Chinese state-owned Minmetals’ to buy most of the indebted miner’s assets. For today’s headlines, click here.

And in the newspapers:

* Turquoise, the European equity system owned by nine investment banks, was forced to close on Wednesday morning because of a technical problem, Financial News said.

* The New York Times Co has hired Goldman Sachs to manage the possible sale of The Boston Globe, and plans to request bids in the next couple of weeks, The Boston Globe reported.

Deals du Jour

U.S. money manager BlackRock is set to buy Barclays Global Investors (BGI) for between $12 billion and $13 billion, people familiar with the matter told Reuters. The deal, which could come today, would create a global asset manager twice the size of its nearest rival. For today’s headlines, click here.

And in the newspapers:

* Australian bank Macquarie may trump a Chinese bid for assets of debt-laden miner OZ Minerals, the Australian Financial Review said, which could stoke further anger in China after its massive deal with Rio Tinto collapsed last week.

* The chief executive of German retailer Metro is already sounding out foreign investors to buy the combined department store group it hopes to create with the Karstadt chain, Handelsblatt paper reported, citing investment bank sources.

Deals du Jour

Porsche is in talks to sell a stake of up to 25 percent in its holding company to the Gulf state of Qatar and a deal could be announced within weeks, people familiar with the talks told the Financial Times. For more of today’s deals headlines on Reuters, click here.

And more in the newspapers:

* German state-controlled bank WestLB was close to being shut down over the weekend , the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the situation.

Owners of the struggling bank agreed to provide an additional 4 billion euros ($5.6 billion) in guarantees to help support a sweeping reorganisation, WestLB said late on Sunday.

Deals du Jour

Cars dominate headlines again, with a GM bankruptcy looming and Chrysler CEO Nardelli saying he expects a deal with Fiat on Friday. In other news, Chartered Semiconductor denies a newspaper report that Advance Technology Investment has bid for Temasek’s majority stake in the firm. For today’s headlines, click here.

And here is what we found of interest in newspapers:

Credit Suisse has begun a plan to sell its London property estate and raise up to 500 million pounds ($800 million), the Financial Times reported.

Terra Firma has been forced to inject more cash into EMI after the debt-laden UK music group missed targets imposed in banking covenants, the Financial Times said. The Wall Street Journal separately said Terra Firma had put up an additional 28 million pounds to bail out EMI.

Deals du Jour

Opel remains the biggest story of the day. Marathon talks to shield it from a looming bankruptcy ended with no results, a deal is now expected by Friday. In another bankruptcy-related story, Nortel Networks is looking for a buyer for its majority stake in a South Korean joint venture with LG Electronics. For today’s top headlines on deals, click here.

This is what we found of interest in the newspapers:

* Fortress Investment Group, a listed private equity and hedge fund company, is nearing an agreement to inject $800 million in fresh capital into First Southern, a Florida bank, with other investors, the Financial Times said.

* Eircom Holdings has started detailed discussions with three potential bidders to sell its 57 percent stake in Eircom, the former Irish state-owned telecoms company, the Financial Times said.

Deals du Jour

With Germany due to decide which bidder — or bidders — it prefers as a partner for Opel, it’s a big day for carmakers. And the sale of RBS’s Asia assets is moving closer as well, with ANZ bank raising money for the purchase, and sources telling Reuters that HSBC has pulled out of the race. For top deals of the day, click here.

From the newspapers:

* A unit of the Aviation Industry Corp of China (AVIC), China’s huge state-owned aircraft maker, plans to list abroad in the near future, the official China Securities Journal said, citing AVIC President Lin Zuoming.

* Citigroup Inc and Bank of America Corp are likely to soon raise base salaries for investment bankers to compensate for limits on annual bonuses, the Wall Street Journal said, citing people familiar with the matter. Read Reuters story here.

Deals du jour

Top deals news today includes LSE boss mulling new acquisitions, BC Partners downing tools on a BGI bid and Fiat signing a big Chinese joint venture. All the latest deals news here.

In the morning papers:

The new chief executive of London Stock Exchange Xavier Rolet has told La Tribune newspaper that he is ready to look at acquisitions and alliances but is not treating them as a priority. Reuters story here.

Borders UK, the bookshop chain owned by private equity firm Risk Capital Partners, has appointed restructuring experts RSM Bentley Jennison to advise on closing underperforming stores, The Independent reported.

Deals du jour

Top deals news today includes Fiat boss’s confidence about an Opel takeover, Regions Financial planning a $1.25 billion stock offer, Aussie Rio shareholders seeking a new Chinalco deal and Novartis buying cancer drugs unit. All the latest deals news here.

In the morning papers:

Fiat SpA has more than a 50 percent chance of successfully linking up with Opel, La Stampa said, citing chief executive Sergio Marchionne. Reuters story here.

British pub company Mitchells & Butlers is in talks with banks over a possible rights issue, the Financial Times reported.