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Chase Bank Limits Cash Withdrawals, Bans International... Before you read this report, remember to sign up to for 100% free stock alerts Chase Bank has moved to limit cash withdrawals while banning business customers from sending...

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Richemont chairman Johann Rupert to take 'grey gap... Billionaire 62-year-old to take 12 months off from Cartier and Montblanc luxury goods groupRichemont's chairman and founder Johann Rupert is to take a year off from September, leaving management of the...

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Cambodia: aftermath of fatal shoe factory collapse... Workers clear rubble following the collapse of a shoe factory in Kampong Speu, Cambodia, on Thursday

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Spate of recent shock departures by 50-something CEOs While the rising financial rewards of running a modern multinational have been well publicised, executive recruiters say the pressures of the job have also been ratcheted upOn approaching his 60th birthday...

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UK Uncut loses legal challenge over Goldman Sachs tax... While judge agreed the deal was 'not a glorious episode in the history of the Revenue', he ruled it was not unlawfulCampaign group UK Uncut Legal Action has lost its high court challenge over the legality...

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Betfair takeover deadline approaches

Category : Business

The deadline is looming for CVC Capital Partners and other investors to put forward a fresh bid for online betting exchange Betfair.

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Blackstone pulls out of Dell bid

Category : World News

Dell’s deteriorating financial condition leads to Blackstone deciding to withdraw its bid for the computer company.

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Google’s new bid to avoid EU fine

Category : Stocks

Google is preparing to change the way it presents search results in Europe in a bid to head off antitrust penalties from the European Union.

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Pre-Marketing: Dish goes hostile on Sprint

Category : Business

Dish launches $25 billion bid for Sprint. Also: The dark side of shareholder activisim.

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Dish makes $25.5bn bid for Sprint

Category : Business, World News

US satellite television company Dish Network makes a $25.5bn bid for mobile phone firm Sprint Nextel, which has already received an offer from Softbank.

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FTSE falls as China slowdown hits mining shares, but United Utilities lifted by bid talk

Category : Business

Leading shares undermining by disappointing Chinese GDP, with metal prices and mining groups under pressure

A smattering of bid talk was not enough to prevent markets moving lower, with mining shares leading the way down.

Disappointing economic data from China – a key market for commodities – hit metal prices, with gold falling to a two year low. China reported a 7.7% rise in first quarter GDP but this was lower than the 7.9% growth achieved in the fourth quarter of 2012 and below forecasts of 8%.

So Randgold Resources is down 366p to £45.92, not helped by Citigroup cutting its price target from £55.40 to £43 and issuing a sell recommendation. Polymetal International is down 57p to 802p while Fresnillo has fallen 79p to £11.94.

Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation has dropped 13.3p to 236.1p, with JP Morgan Cazenove edging down its price target to 295p from 300p.

Overall the FTSE 100 has fallen 68.22 points to 6316.17, despite takeover speculation lifting water shares. United Utilities has jumped 19.5p to 740.5p, a 2.7% rise following weekend reports the company was beefing up its defences against a bid. Infrastructure funds are said to be keen on UK utilities, which has also helped lift Severn Trent 19p to £17.25. But Peter Atherton at Liberum Capital was cautious:

United Utilities has (according to a Sunday Times article) appointed Goldman as an advisor. The Sunday Times says that this is to beef up its defence team against a possible bid, although the company is quoted as saying that the appointment was part of a normal review of advisors. Last week it was Pennon, this week United Utilities.

These rumours do the rounds every few months. The reason they keep re-appearing is that there is some logic. We know that infra funds like UK network assets and especially their inflation protection. But there are several things against a bid. First, we are already into year 3 of this 5 year regulatory cycle. So a bidder would only have 1.5 years left where they know the regulatory settlement. Ofwat are changing a lot in 2015 so a bidder would face considerable uncertainty over the post 2015 cash flow. Second is size, United Utilities has a market cap of £4.7bn so a bidder would need to pay somewhere north of £5.5bn which is probably too big for any infra fund (this is not 2006). So the chance of a bid – 20%.

Still with utilities, Centrica has climbed 1.3p to 380.7p after the British Gas owner linked up with Qatar Petroleum to pay $987m for oil and gas assets in Canada.

Vodafone and China Mobile team up

Category : Business

The two biggest telecommunications companies in the world team up to bid for mobile licences in Burma, as the country continues to open up.

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Verizon denies Vodafone bid rumours

Category : Business

Verizon quells speculation after reports it was preparing joint £161bn takeover with AT&T sent Vodafone shares to record high

Verizon Communications, the US telecoms company, has moved to quell speculation it is preparing a joint takeover of Vodafone, telling investors it has no plans for a bid.

Reports that Verizon and fellow US company AT&T were preparing a joint £161bn bid sent Vodafone’s shares to a decade-high on Tuesday, forcing Verizon to clarify its intentions.

Verizon has made no secret of its desire to take full control of the largest mobile network in the US, Verizon Wireless, which it owns jointly with Vodafone.

In a statement on Tuesday night, the company said: “As Verizon has said many times, it would be a willing purchaser of the 45% stake that Vodafone holds in Verizon Wireless. It does not, however, currently have any intention to merge with or make an offer for Vodafone, whether alone or in conjunction with others”.

Vodafone shares soared as much as 6%, valuing the company at £94bn, after the Financial Times suggested the bid could be pitched at about 260p a share. At this price, it would be the world’s biggest ever corporate acquisition, dwarfing the current record-holder AOL’s $182bn (£120bn) takeover of Time Warner in 2000. They fell back 3%, to 187p, in early trading on Wednesday.

“We think that the wording of Verizon’s press release also makes it clear that Verizon have made their interest in the Verizon Wireless stake to Vodafone and been rebuffed,” said Robin Bienenstock, an analyst at Bernstein Research. “In other words, we view Vodafone as a (very) reluctant seller.”

One stumbling block is understood to be the large amount of tax Vodafone would have to pay should it sell all or part of its stake. The current ownership structure has allowed Vodafone to pay two large tax-free dividends from Verizon profits.

Campaigners hail Novartis ruling

Category : Business, World News

Healthcare campaigners hail India’s rejection of a patent bid by Swiss company Novartis for its cancer drug, Glivec, amid industry criticism.

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US tycoon Haskell keen on Coventry

Category : Business, World News

Struggling Coventry City are lined up for a takeover bid from American tycoon Preston Haskell IV.

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