WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Whole Foods Market Inc (WFMI) lost a bid on Friday for a larger panel of judges to review an appeals court decision that threw into question the legality of its already completed merger with former rival Wild Oats. The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia said in a […]
Abu Dhabi Investment Co. has agreed to acquire OrasInvest from Orascom Telecom for $180 million, including $90 million in cash and $90 million in interest-bearing promissory notes due 12 months after the deal closes. OrasInvest builds and maintains mobile phone transmission towers, and provides other related services. It will maintain its contracts with Orascom Telecom.
Summit Partners' investment in Airborne Health has turned out to be a massive headache. It featured a busted auction, a class-action lawsuit over false health claims and a violation of covenant agreements. Last month the firm finally got out of the mess, quietly selling the nutritional supplement maker back to its founder, former second grade teacher, Victoria Knight-McDowell. If only it were that simple. In an attempt to start anew, Knight-McDowell today released a commercial trashing the firm's management of her company (watch video at bottom of post). In it, she explains her buying back of the Airborne: Three years ago, I sold Airborne to a private equity group and went on to raise my family during this time. However, I became increasingly unhappy with how my company was being managed, and so, in October of 2008, I bought it back. The commercial leaves out a few big things. First of all, she was both a minority shareholder and board member during Summit's ownership ...
Yahoo has sold European comparison shopping service Kelkoo to Jamplant, a new UK-based private equity firm launched by the founders of USwitch (sold to EW Scripps in 2006 for £210 million). www.kelkoo.com
There have been plenty of busted auctions this year, with buyer and seller expectations set miles apart. That's bad news for PE shops in search of exits, but some firms are getting creative by using partial exits (i.e., selling a minority stake). It's simple. You scour your debt agreements and find out how much you can sell without triggering a change of control clause. Then sell exactly that much, in cash, to another private equity firm. It should be a small enough chunk that at least someone can afford to bridge it. The capital structure stays in place, you gain liquidity and your buyer gets an attractively priced stake in a company with a pre-credit crunch capital structure already in place. It's a way to rustle up some liquidity, which you could return to LPs, use to pay down debt, or help an ailing company make it through the downturn. Several sources have told me they're seeing books circulate for the
Even though global loan defaults have quadrupled in 2008, the percentage of defaults with private equity fingerprints on them has decreased in the last quarter, according to a recent Standard & Poor's report. Titled "Private Equity Swirling In The Eye Of The Storm," the report states that 53 of the 86 loan defaulters this year have been involved with private equity firms, which equals 61%. Compare that with the ratings agency's September report, which traced 70% of the 55 defaults back to private equity firms. I'm not sure what the drop means, other than an increase in companies with non-LBO leverage are having a tough time servicing their debt. In general, I predict a spike in defaults in 2009 but don't expect the percentage of private equity involvement
(Reuters) – A consortium led by China’s sovereign wealth fund is in talks to buy a 49 percent stake in AIG (AIG.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) unit Alico in a deal that could be worth up to $10.6 billion, Japan’s Nikkei business daily reported on Friday. The paper said U.S. insurance firm American International […]
DUBLIN (Reuters) – Bank of Ireland has received unsolicited bid approaches from unnamed groups, it said on Friday, lifting its shares over 30 percent as speculation grew over government plans for consolidation in the sector. Separately, Irish Life & Permanent (IPM.I) said it had been in discussions with the EBS building society over how the […]
Gilde Buy Out Fund has acquired a majority stake in the Powerlines Group from Invest Equity, for an undisclosed amount. Powerlines Group is a contractor for the planning, installation and maintenance of catenary systems, conductor rails, transmission lines and cable systems. Company management will retain a minority position.
BARCELONA (Reuters) – German publisher Axel Springer said it could still be interested in buying ProSiebenSat.1 after its 2.5 billion-euro ($3.1 billion) bid to buy the broadcaster was thwarted two years ago. Chief Executive Mathias Doepfner said Springer had other options including building its own video business but might consider another attempt to buy ProSieben […]

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