DealZone

DealZone Daily

Arrow Energy says discussions with Royal Dutch Shell and PetroChina over their $3 billion joint takeover offer for the Australian group are continuing. That is despite a story in the Australian Financial Review that says Arrow is set to reject the bid as too low. Read the Reuters story here.

Also in energy, China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC) is planning a joint venture with Argentina’s Bridas Energy Holdings. It will pay $3.1 billion to take a 50-percent stake in subsidiary Bridas Corporation. Incidentally, Bridas owns 40 percent in Pan American Energy — which is 60-percent owned by oil major BP.

For these and all other stories, click here.

And elsewhere in media:

The Japanese government is considering spinning off Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp’s fibre-optic businesses into a separate company, the Yomiuri newspaper reported.

Phillips-Van Heusen is close to a deal to buy U.S. fashion brand Tommy Hilfiger Corp for about 2.2 billion euros ($3 billion), The New York Times reported, citing people briefed on the matter.

Keeping score: Exxon-XTO data points

From the Thomson Reuters data team:

    Exxon Mobil’s $40.7 billion acquisition of XTO Energy ranks as the sixth biggest announced worldwide M&A transaction this year and the fourth biggest US target transaction. The deal ranks as the eighth biggest Energy & Power M&A transaction in history and marks the biggest US transaction since Chevron’s $43.3 billion acquisition of Texaco in October 2000.  The $85.1 billion combination of Exxon and Mobil in December 1998 ranks as the biggest Energy & Power deal on record. Worldwide, energy & power M&A totals $330.9 billion for year-to-date 2009, an 18.1% decrease from last year at this time.  Worldwide M&A in the oil & gas sector totals $203.7 billion, a 17.2% increase over last year at this time. In the US, energy & power M&A accounts for 12.2% of overall activity, a 7.5 decline from last year.  Oil & gas M&A activity in the US totals $74.9 billion, a 35.6% increase over 2008. With the announcement, JP Morgan (advisor to Exxon Mobil), moves from fourth place to third place for worldwide merger advisors, with $467.5 billion in announced deals from 299 deals. Barclays and Jefferies (advisors to XTO Energy) rank 10th and 21st, respectively. In the US, JP Morgan remains in third place with $269.5 billion.  Barclays moves to sixth place from seventh and Jefferies moves from 23rd place to 13th.

Noted: Resources M&A to pick up, Deloitte says

Deloitte’s Energy and Resources group says M&A in these sectors could return to “pre-recession levels” by 2011. In particular, it says the rise of big state-backed rivals is putting pressure on large mining groups, in much the same way Big Oil came under pressure a decade ago. From the group’s 2010 predictions report:

“During 2009, mining M&A has been led by the junior or mid-level players, which have to consolidate if they want to stay alive and not be swallowed up by the bigger firms. Indeed, many anticipate that the mining sector will continue to consolidate until there are a handful of supermajor firms like there are in oil & gas.

“Large mining companies will increasingly need to buy rivals and subsequently sell off assets to gain synergies if they are to compete with state-owned companies, particularly those from China.

Deals du Jour

An employee checks a halogen low energy consumption light bulb at an Osram factory in Molsheim, eastern France December 11, 2008. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler (FRANCE)Japan’s Toshiba Corp (6502.T) is lining up a bid for French nuclear group Areva’s (CEPFi.PA) power grid that could be worth over $5 billion according to Reuters sources.

The private banking assets of Dutch bank ING (ING.AS) are the subject of up to five bids which may reach $2 billion, sources familiar with the deal said. Swiss firm Julius Baer (BAER.VX) and Singapore’s DBS (DBSM.SI) have been identified to Reuters as definite bidders in the process.

For more from Reuters on the latest deals, click here.

Below is a round-up of all the market chatter from the press on Friday:

* AIG (AIG.N) will likely now announce the buyer of its Taiwan Nan Shan Life unit at the end of September instead of on Friday, Chinese-language newspaper Commercial Times reported, after potential buyers bid below the $2 billion the insurer had hoped for.  

Is oil heating up?

oil1Energy M&A has heated up over the past few weeks, with two large deals possibly on the horizon: the sale of Repsol’s Argentine unit YPF as well as Kosmos Energy’s stake in the Jubilee oil field in Ghana.

If thise deals would happen, it would follow Suncor Energy’s $20 billion takeover of rival Petro Canada, announced earlier this year.

So is M&A in the oil sector heating up? Maybe, but insiders warn that the fluctuations in oil and gas prices could slow the flow of deals.

from Summit Notebook:

Nasdaq president to finance companies: come hither

A fertile planting ground for tech, biotech and even some energy offerings, Nasdaq OMX has historically struggled to lure listings in some other areas, notably financial services.

Now, that could be about to change, Nasdaq OMX President Magnus Bocker said at the Reuters Exchanges and Trading Summit. As Nasdaq looks for ways to attract new listings and end a virtual drought in IPOs, it sees financial services firms as one of the most promising areas.

That Nasdaq would at least be hoping to narrow the gap in financial services listings with NYSE, the traditional ruler of the space, is not as out of left field as it might sound.