Wednesday 30 April 2014

Not another Metso story!

Here's an interesting snippet I recently picked up about Weir Group's attempt to "merge" with Finnish company Metso.

Good sources have told me the maximum price Weir Group is willing to pay for Metso is EURO 28 a share.

Monday 28 April 2014

Another day, another multibillion dollar pharma deal....

Wow - today's news about Pfizer formally launching its $100 billion takeover bid for AstraZeneca has sent the pharmacuetical sector rumour mill into overdrive.

One company that is getting a lot of attention in European markets is US-based InterMune, a biotechnology business focused on the research and development of therapies in pulmonology and fibrotic diseases.

Friday 25 April 2014

Back on Tip TV to talk about pharma deals, Alstom and Ladbrokes

Loyal Betaville readers might be pleased to hear my celebrity status is increasing as I was asked back onto to Tip TV today.

Don't worry, though, I won't let it go to my head. For any reader that is interested, here is a link to today's clip.

Thursday 24 April 2014

Fancy a pint - part 2

Loyal Betaville readers may recall that a few weeks ago I published a post about FTSE 250 pub companies Mitchells & Butlers and Greene King.

For those readers that don't remember, I noticed that both companies had almost identical market capitalisations. And after speaking to an excellent source, I noted speculation there had this year been some loose discussions about the two companies combining.

Wednesday 23 April 2014

Rose replaces Rose at Blue Inc ahead of IPO

Here's an interesting tale about one of Britain's oldest retailers.

I understand Sir Stuart Rose, the former chief executive of Marks & Spencer, has stepped down as chairman of "fast fashion" retailer Blue Inc ahead of a potential flotation of the 100-year old company.

Monday 21 April 2014

Marlow cooks up massive drugs deal

Huge hat tip to Ben Marlow, the M&A reporter over at The Sunday Times. 

Ben - who is having an amazing story-breaking run at the moment - landed the scoop of the Easter weekend (and possibly the year) with his tale that US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has been weighing a £60 billion takeover bid for London-listed AstraZeneca.

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Metso back under the spotlight - again!

I see Finnish engineering company Metso has today rejected Weir Group's £8.5 billion all-share merger proposal. Not much of a surprise there following last week's shenanigans on Betaville.

Weir Group said in its statement that it had offered 0.8400 shares per Metso share to the Finnish company's board.

Monday 14 April 2014

Another Aussie scoop: SAS swoops on Yorkshire Water

An Australian investment group that manages pensions for the New South Wales police force has secretly purchased a multi-million pound stake in Yorkshire Water, one of Britain's largest water companies.

Top sources down under tell me that in recent weeks the SAS Trustee Corporation, also known as the State Super, bought a 10pc shareholding in Kelda - the company that owns Yorkshire Water - from Citigroup Infrastructure Investors and Infracapital, which is part of FTSE 100-listed insurer Prudential.

Thursday 10 April 2014

Wellcare Health Plans Inc said to be $4bn takeover target for US healthcare insurance giants

There is a bit of a buzz in European markets about a US company called Wellcare Health Plans Inc and I think I know why.

Wellcare Health Plans Inc - which provides Medicare and Medicaid managed care plans to its members in the US - has this year already been tipped as a takeover target by several leading Wall Street analysts, including scribblers round at Credit Suisse.

Betaville gets back on Tip TV...and talks about Metso

Good news - Tip TV asked me back onto the show today to talk about M&A.

Here is a link to today's Tip TV clip:

Metso back under the spotlight...

I have just picked up a rather interesting titbit about Weir Group's attempt to combine with the Finnish engineering company Metso.

Betaville readers will remember that I kicked off the story back in early March when some of sources told me "something is going on" with Metso and that FTSE 100-listed Weir Group may be looking to buy the business. Here is a link to the original story: spotlight.html

Tuesday 8 April 2014

How to tell whether a merger rumour will come true.....

A couple of US academics have just published some research on Merger & Acquisition (M&A) reporting (a subject close to my heart) in the US.

They have come up with some interesting theories on how to tell whether M&A stories will come "true".

Sunday 6 April 2014

House of Ashley

Being a rather self-deprecating chap (I'm half English, after all) I tend to avoid shameless self promotion. But on this occasion, I can't resist.

Last Monday, I congratulated Ben Marlow, the M&A reporter over at The Sunday Times, on Betaville for getting the scoop about the £450m takeover of House of Fraser by China's Sanpower Corporation.

Friday 4 April 2014

Aussie scoop: Evolution Mining said to be in talks to buy OZ Minerals for AUS$1.6bn

I've got an Australian deal exclusive for Betaville readers that like to keep an eye on things happening down under. 

Top sources down under tell me Evolution Mining, a listed Australian gold and silver mining company, has been holding advanced talks with OZ Minerals about buying the business for AUS$1.6 billion.   

Betaville makes debut on Tip TV

Good news - I have become a TV celebrity.

Just joking. Seriously, though, Betaville made its debut on Tip TV - check it out everyday at - alongside Nick "Moose" Batsford, a City veteran, south Londoner and also a lovely man.

Thursday 3 April 2014

JD...and Cognac

In discreet Mayfair hotel bars men in dark glasses are talking about Remy Cointreau. But it's not because they like drinking expensive Cognac.

There is a theory rattling around the hedge fund districts of London, Paris and Geneva that Remy Cointreau is a takeover target for US drinks giant Brown-Forman, owner of Tennessee whiskey Jack Daniel's.

Wednesday 2 April 2014

Sweett Group is not so sweet after all

Sweett Group shares have taken a hammering this morning, tumbling by almost 30pc.

This is because the company, one of Britain's oldest quantity surveyors, said it has discovered evidence that suggests "material instances of deception may have been perpetrated by a former employee or employees of the group during the period of 2009 - 2011".

Tuesday 1 April 2014

Parkinson on top form - again

Gary Parkinson take a bow.

Gary, a market reporter over at The Times, and his colleague Robert Lea have just landed a cracking scoop about Weir Group trying to merge with Finland's Metso as part of an £8.5bn deal. Here is a link the piece: