Hologic to acquire aesthetics firm Cynosure

Hologic has agreed to acquire Nasdaq-listed Cynosure by April this year as it looks to tap the beauty industry for further growth. The deal, which has been approved by the boards of both companies, can be valued at USD 1,440 million, including debt and net of cash. The offer price of USD 66 apiece represents a 28.2 per cent premium over Cynosure’s close of USD 51.50 on 13th February, the last trading day prior to the announcement. According to Zephyr, the M&A database published by Bureau van Dijk, this is Hologic’s first acquisition since its USD 3,743 million purchase of Gen-Probe, a nucleic acid testing system provider, in 2012.

Snap files for IPO

Snap, the parent of social media photo sharing application Snapchat, is trying its hand at the capital market by filing paperwork with the New York Stock Exchange for an initial public offering worth around USD 3,000 million. Founders Evan Spiegel and Robert Murphy, as well as venture capitalists Lightspeed and Benchmark Capital, are expected to divest their stakes through the deal by the end of this year. Underwritten by financial giants including Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan, the IPO is the second largest to have been announced globally in the past four years, according to Zephyr, the M&A database published by Bureau van Dijk. The highest valued IPO during the period is Hotel Lotte’s KRW 5,742 billion (USD 5,002 million) planned listing on the Korea Exchange, which is also set to take place this year.

Chan Zuckerberg Initiative announces first acquisition

In December 2015, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, alongside his wife Priscilla Chan, established the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) with an aim to “advance human potential and promote equality in areas such as health, education, scientific research, and energy”, according to its webpage. Funded by the couple’s personal wealth, the USD 45,000 million organisation was formed as a limited liability company (LLC), rather than a charity. Explaining his choice of structure for the entity, Zuckerberg stated: “By using an LLC instead of a traditional foundation, we receive no tax benefit from transferring our shares to the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, but we gain flexibility to execute our mission more effectively.

Spanish mobile application developer targeted by angels in January

2016 ended on a fairly encouraging note in terms of the aggregate value of angel investment in European companies, although the year as a whole followed the general pattern witnessed in global M&A, in that a decline was registered on 2015. 

McDonald’s to sell businesses in Far East

McDonald’s is reaching out to potential suitors for the sale of its Jasdaq Securities Exchange-listed unit, a process that has been ongoing since 2015. The Oak Brook-based fast food chain intends to offload a 33.0 per cent interest in McDonald's Holdings Company Japan (McDonald’s Japan), for around JPY 100 billion (according to Nikkei Asian Review). Facilitated by Morgan Stanley, the deal has attracted a number of private equity buyers, the Wall Street Journal reported.


International suitors line up to invest in Vietnam

Vietnam is the country in Southeast Asia known for its beaches, rivers and Buddhist pagodas, and in terms of mergers and acquisitions (M&A), for several notable inbound deals announced in 2016 which helped push overall M&A value for companies based in the country to the second-highest on record (2012: USD 10,094 million), according to Zephyr, the M&A database published by Bureau van Dijk.


Alibaba to delist Intime Retail

This week Alibaba revealed plans to take Intime Retail private for HKD 14,712 million (USD 1,897 million) in a move that will further extend its presence in the brick-and-mortar retail sector. The buyer, which purchased Intime’s shares and convertible bonds back in 2014, will team up with the target’s founder Shen Guojun to acquire the remaining 54.2 per cent stake in the Hong Kong Stock Exchange-listed group. The offer price of HKD 10 apiece represents a 42.2 per cent premium over Intime’s close of HKD 7.03 on 23rd December, the last trading day prior to the announcement. The deal, which is subject to stockholder and regulatory approvals, is expected to take place by August this year.

Australia’s ANZ scales back businesses in Asia

After years of expansion efforts in Asia, the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) is making a U-turn by cutting back on its operations in the region. Last week, the banking group announced it would offload its 20.0 per cent interest in Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank (SRBC) for CNY 9,190 million (USD 1,328 million), which represents about 1.1 times the target’s net assets as at December 2015. Shanghai Sino-Poland Enterprise Management Development and Chinese shipping company China COSCO will each take a 10 per cent stake in the commercial bank. Being assisted by Goldman Sachs, the vendor aims to complete the sale by the middle of this year.

Baidu’s video site seeks billion dollar IPO

Baidu’s iQiyi is planning a USD 1,000 million listing, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported last month, as the online search giant sets its eyes on China’s booming video on demand industry. The IPO, which may take place in either the US or Hong Kong next year, could value the video platform at up to USD 5,000 million, according to the newspaper. This is well in excess of the USD 2,800 million offered by Baidu’s co-founder Robin Li and iQiyi’s chief executive Gong Yu earlier to buy an 80.5 per cent stake in iQiyi. Their proposal was later terminated as it failed to satisfy Baidu’s shareholders, which included hedge fund Acacia Partners. In addition to the IPO, iQiyi is reportedly looking to raise funds via a pre-initial public offering transaction by issuing convertible bonds or other similar securities. According to Reuters, however, Baidu denied reports of such deals being in the pipeline.

Softbank invests in satellite network provider after Trump meeting

Japanese telecommunications giant Softbank is injecting USD 1,000 million in OneWeb, a Virginia-based company that uses satellites to provide rural areas with affordable high-speed internet access. The target’s existing investors are also participating in the funding round and will invest a further USD 200 million. Pending regulatory approvals, the transaction is expected to close in the first quarter next year.

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