Deals of the day - bids, mergers and acquisitions

By Staff Reporter

Jul 12, 2013 11:30 PM EDT

The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported on Friday.

US Airways Group Inc shareholders approved the carrier's plan to merge with AMR Corp's American Airlines, clearing another hurdle to the deal that would create the world's largest carrier. The $11 billion merger deal was announced in February and the companies expect to complete it by the end of September, said Parker, who will be chief executive of the new American Airlines, which will be based in Texas. 

Britain will start selling its shares in Lloyds Banking Group to pension funds and insurers later this year, rejecting interest from private equity and sovereign wealth funds, industry and political sources said. The sale will take the form of an "accelerated book build" in which up to 10 percent of shares in the bank would be sold to financial institutions over a period of one or two days, raising between 4 billion pounds ($6.1 billion) and 5 billion. 

Walt Disney Co, Twenty-First Century Fox Inc and NBC Universal said on Friday they will keep their ownership stakes in video streaming website Hulu and will invest $750 million to help it grow. 

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn and Southeastern Asset Management Inc sweetened their bid for Dell Inc by adding a warrant they say would increase the value of the offer to $15.50-$18 per share from $14. 

German bathroom fixtures maker Grohe has attracted takeover interest from at least two suitors, people familiar with the process said, in what could be Europe's largest private equity deal of the year.  Thailand's Siam Cement and Switzerland's Geberit have expressed interest in buying Grohe, according to the people familiar, with the value of the private company said to be worth around 4 billion euros ($5 billion).

The prospect of a bid battle powered Invensys shares to a ten-year high on Friday, after the British engineer said it had received a 3.3 billion pound ($5 billion) takeover proposal from France's Schneider Electric. 

German industrial group GEA Group AG will target private equity groups in its push to sell its heat exchanger unit, hoping to fetch a price of more than 1.3 billion euros ($1.7 billion), three people familiar with the situation said. 

Chinese cellphone chip designer Spreadtrum Communications Inc is set to be acquired by a state-owned Chinese company in a $1.78 billion deal likely to improve its links to mobile carriers in the world's most populous country. 

Private equity firm Permira has entered the fray for Norwegian state-controlled Cermaq's fish feed arm with a bid worth more than $1 billion, two sources familiar with the situation said on Friday. Fish farmer Cermaq said on Monday it had received a rival indicative offer for the unit, EWOS, which oustripped a 6.2 billion crown ($1.0 billion) bid from private equity firms Bain and Altor. 

British life insurer Phoenix Group is in talks to buy the Admin Re unit of Swiss Re, re-starting its drive to consolidate the sector and achieve savings after a hiatus caused by its heavy debts.

Indonesian coal tycoon Samin Tan has agreed a $223 million deal to lift his stake in Bumi Plc to over 47 percent, buying out the Bakrie family in the first part of a deal aimed at ending the family's involvement in the troubled London-listed coal miner. 

Flint Hills Resources said on Thursday it would acquire Platinum Ethanol's plant in northwestern Iowa, a facility with an annual capacity of 110,000 million gallons. The deal is expected to close later this year and would bring to six the number of ethanol plants owned by Flint Hills, five of which would be in Iowa, the No. 1 ethanol- and corn-producing state. 

Tax services provider H&R Block Inc said it would sell its banking assets to a unit of Republic Bancorp Inc as it looks to avoid a sharp rise in costs associated with the introduction of stricter banking rules by the Federal Reserve. 

Brazilian power company Energisa SA on Thursday agreed to acquire control of Grupo Rede Energia SA, sealing a deal aimed at steering the former rival out of bankruptcy protection. Energisa has offered to pay creditors 1.95 billion reais ($862 million) and pump an additional 1.1 billion reais of fresh investments into the company. 

Qatar, the world's biggest liquefied gas producer which is looking to grow more quickly abroad, has held initial talks with Germany's No.2 utility RWE AG about buying its DEA oil and gas exploration and production unit. RWE said in March it was planning to offload DEA to slash capital spending and cut its multi-billion euro debts, with one of the people saying the company aimed to raise about 5 billion euros ($6.5 billion) from the sale. 

Zurich Financial Services has sold about $283 million worth of shares in New China Life Insurance, paring its stake in China's third-biggest life insurer in an attempt to diversify its Asian portfolio. 

Britain's Centrica said on Friday it was buying Texas-based electricity retailer Bounce Energy for $46 million, giving it a new online platform to help grow its North American customer base. 

Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corp said it would buy a 54 percent stake in Canada's Medicago Inc for up to C$179 million ($172 million) to add plant-derived vaccine technology to its portfolio. 

Spain's Banco Popular will book a 21-million-euro ($27.4 million) profit from the sale of the life insurance portfolio of its Pastor Vida arm, a source with knowledge of the deal said on Friday. 

South Korea is reviewing its overseas investments in oil and gas due to poor profitability, particularly those made in the last five years, which could lead to asset sales to offset losses, industry and government sources said on Friday. 

German home improvement retailer Praktiker's insolvency prompted speculation on Friday that its outlets may be sold to rivals seeking market share in Europe's biggest economy, such as Kingfisher or Hagebau. 

Bank of Nova Scotia withdrew its application to acquire a nearly 20 percent stake in Bank of Guangzhou on Friday after Chinese authorities decided against proceeding with the C$719 million ($691.28 million) deal.

Greece's bank rescue fund picked Eurobank to acquire small lender Proton on Friday as part of moves to further consolidate its banking system and meet one of the conditions for its next tranche of bailout funding. Based on Proton's 2012 financial statement, it has negative equity of almost 200 million euros ($261.07 million). 

Greece launched a tender to sell its railway monopoly Trainose on Friday, as is scrambles to meet privatisation targets agreed with its international creditors and pay down its debt.Greece has raised about 1.7 billion euros ($2.22 billion)from state asset sales since its first bailout in 2010 and is unlikely to meet this year's 2.5 billion euro target after failing to find buyers for natural gas company DEPA last month. 

Swiss drugmaker Roche Holding AG is seeking financing for a potential takeover of Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc, a transaction that would be the largest healthcare deal of the year, two people familiar with the matter said on Friday. Roche and Alexion declined to comment.  

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