Seeking Alpha
  • Today - Tuesday, November 25, 2014

  • 5:53 PM
    • CNBC reports Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) has held talks with Shots, a Justin Bieber-backed developer of iOS/Android apps for taking and sharing selfies.
    • Shots reportedly has 3M+ users, nearly 2/3 of whom are women under 24. Twitter, meanwhile, has built a huge base for its Vine 6-second video service, and recently said it's open to launching standalone apps for Vine and other services.
    • The report comes a day after CFO Anthony Noto accidentally tweeted out an apparent direct message about M&A talks. Noto: "I still think we should buy them. He is on your schedule for Dec 15 or 16 -- we will need to sell him. i have a plan."
    • Re/code also reports Twitter has talked with Shots.
    | 3 Comments
  • 3:56 PM
    • Perrigo Company plc (PRGO -0.1%) places $1.6B aggregate principal amount of Senior Notes. The offering consisted of $500M 3.50% Senior Notes due 2021, $700M 3.90% Senior Notes due 2024 and $400M 4.90% Senior Notes due 2044. The three issues were sold at 99.937%, 99.579% and 99.701%, respectively.
    • Proceeds will fund the company's acquisition of Omega Pharma Invest NV.
    | Comment!
  • 12:59 PM
    • The merger between Cocrystal Pharma (OTCQB:COCP +10.9%) and RFS Pharma, LLC has closed. The shareholders of each company will each own ~50% of combined entity.
    • The merged organization will have a broad pipeline of products in hepatitis, influenza, rhinovirus, dengue fever and norovirus.
    • Dr. Gary Wilcox will be CEO and Co-Chairman of the new firm. RFS Founder and Chairman Dr. Raymond F. Schinazi will be the other Co-Chairman.
    | Comment!
  • 10:13 AM
    • C&J Energy Services (CJES +3.6%) says it plans to appeal a Delaware court ruling that requires it to solicit offers from other buyers for 30 days before it can merge with a unit of Nabors Industries (NBR -0.5%).
    • NBR announced in June that it would merge its completion and production business with CJES and receive $2.86B in cash and stock; the deal is structured as a Reverse Morris Trust, a transaction that allows a parent company to sell its unit in a tax-efficient manner.
    • But CJES shares are higher, as investor appetite for the deal had been waning given the integration risk and less favorable industry outlook.
    | Comment!
  • Monday, November 24, 2014

  • 9:49 PM
    • A Delaware court today ordered a 30-day hold on the C&J Energy (NYSE:CJES) acquisition of a Nabors Industries (NYSE:NBR) unit, finding C&J’s board did not adequately shop the company and telling it to feel out other potential buyers, WSJ reports.
    • The deal, announced in June, was unusual as CJES was the nominal buyer, agreeing to pay NBR 62.5M shares and $940M in cash for the fracking services unit, but NBR is to retain control of the combined entity with a 53% stake to CJES shareholders’ 47%.
    • The judge found that because CJES shareholders essentially were turning over control of their investment to NBR, the deal was subject to a corporate law theory that required the board to take steps to get the best possible price.
    | 3 Comments
  • 6:55 PM
    • News Corp. (NASDAQ:NWS) is spending $30M to buy a 25% stake in PropTiger.com, a leading Indian real estate site.
    • The investment comes on the heels of News Corp.'s $950M purchase of Realtor.com owner Move. The company also had a 61.6% stake in REA Group, which owns leading Australian real estate site realestate.com.au.
    | Comment!
  • 6:28 PM
    • Various hedge funds were told this month by a prominent London mining banker to prepare for an all-but-inevitable takeover of Rio Tinto (NYSE:RIO) by Glencore (OTCPK:GLCNF, OTCPK:GLNCY), Bloomberg reports.
    • Former JPMorgan Chase dealmaker Ian Hannam, who now runs a boutique advisory firm, reportedly convened reps of more than 20 investors to share his views on the potential deal, perhaps intended in part to help position his firm to win a role in the transaction.
    • Glencore said last month it had abandoned a bid for Rio after a July proposal worth ~$160B was rebuffed.
    | 4 Comments
  • 5:43 PM
    • HealthSouth (NYSE:HLS) climbed 5.2% today as investors liked its $750M purchase of the owner of Encompass Home Health, expanding its own home health business with another 140 locations across 13 states, while also saying further healthcare acquisitions may be likely in the future.
    • The acquisition will allow patients who are being discharged from HLS hospitals to continue their rehabilitation at home, under the care of Encompass; many of these older patients currently enter skilled nursing facilities to rehabilitate from injuries, strokes or other health episodes.
    • The deal allows HLS to expand into a separate post-acute care vertical with a leading provider to participate in the coming bundled payments system Medicare and Medicaid plans on implementing, according to Obsidian Research.
    | Comment!
  • 5:19 PM
    • Stryker (NYSE:SYK) is considering making a bid for medical device manufacturer Smith & Nephew (NYSE:SNN) as a standstill period that prevents it from making an offer nears its end, according to reports out earlier.
    • SYK is examining structuring the deal as a tax inversion, allowing it to move its legal address to the lower-tax U.K., but SYK is said to see strong strategic reasons to pursue a combination aside from tax advantages, and an inversion would not be essential to make the deal work.
    • J.P. Morgan analysts think an acquisition could be at least 7%-8% accretive to SYK's 2016 EPS, rising to 11% in 2017 and 13% in 2018, assuming a 30%-35% premium relative to the unaffected price and that the acquisition is not an inversion; however, the firm thinks SNN is not looking to sell, and a combination would not gain easy U.S. or EU anti-trust approval.
    • SNN gained 4.3% and SYK rose 1.4% in today's trading.
    | 1 Comment
  • 4:04 PM
    • Sources close to the matter say Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY) (OTCPK:BAYZF) is exploring the sale of its diabetes device business as it focuses on higher growth areas. The company is supposedly working with Credit Suisse on the potential deal. Observers believe the unit could fetch between €1B - 2B ($2.5B). 
    • Bayer also intends to jettison its plastics business.
    | Comment!
  • 4:02 PM
    • Bloomberg reports The Ontario Teachers Pension Plan and Canada's Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP) are near a $7B deal to buy Telesat that would value Loral (LORL +7.2%) at $85/share.
    • Loral has spiked to $78.50 on the report. The company recently shot down a Telesat deal valuing it at $80/share.
    | 3 Comments
  • 12:59 PM
    • PerkinElmer (PKI -0.3%) acquires Stockholm-based Perten Instruments Group AB for $266M. Perten manufactures advanced analytical instruments for quality control of food, grain, flour and feed. The transaction expands PerkinElmer's footprint in food testing.
    • Perten's top line is ~$65M. It should contribute ~$0.04 to PKI's earnings in 2015.
    | Comment!
  • 11:41 AM
    • The closing date for RF Micro (RFMD +1.5%) and TriQuint's (TQNT +2.2%) all-stock "merger of equals" has been set at the end of each company's calendar Q4.
    • As previously announced, RF Micro/TriQuint will be known as Qorvo post-merger, and trade under the symbol QRVO.
    | Comment!
  • 11:27 AM
    • American Tower (AMT +0.2%) hasn't disclosed how much it's paying to buy Airtel's Nigerian tower portfolio. Airtel's Nigerian unit will act as the portfolio's anchor tenant, courtesy of a 10-year lease. (PR)
    • AMT CEO Jim Taiclet: "With the largest population and economy in Africa and relatively underdeveloped wireless infrastructure, we view Nigeria as a tremendous growth opportunity. Further, we expect this investment to support our long-term objective of generating double-digit AFFO per share growth for our stockholders."
    • The agreement comes on the heels of a $1.2B deal to buy 6,480 Brazilian towers from TIM Participacoes.
    • Update: AMT discloses in an 8-K it's paying $1.05B for the Nigerian towers.
    | Comment!
  • 9:44 AM
    • Onex (OTCPK:ONEXF +1.1%) agrees to pay up to €3.75B ($4.64B) for Swiss carton packaging maker SIG Combibloc Group from New Zealand-based Reynolds Group.
    • SIG is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of carton packaging for the food and beverage industry.
    • Reynolds said earlier that SIG’s Q3 revenue fell 3% to $549M on lower sales in Europe, the Middle East and Asia, where a raw milk shortage slowed demand for cartons.
    | Comment!
  • 9:29 AM
    • Nearly a decade after it sold U.K. mobile carrier O2 to Telefonica (NYSE:TEF), BT is thinking of either buying back O2 or acquiring rival EE from Orange (NYSE:ORAN) and Deutsche Telekom (OTCQX:DTEGY), the FT reports. Spain's El Confidencial reports Telefonica could sell O2 in exchange for a 20% stake in BT.
    • BT owns 4G spectrum, and already offers MVNO services through a deal with EE. EE and Vodafone are hatching plans to encroach on BT's turf by offering quad-play bundles. Engadget notes acquiring a mobile carrier make BT the only carrier with "full control over its home phone, broadband, mobile and TV services."
    • BT has confirmed it has "received expressions of interest from shareholders in two UK mobile network operators, of which one is O2, about a possible transaction in which BT would acquire their UK mobile business." Orange CEO Stephane Richard recently stated EE's 50/50 ownership structure was unlikely to last.
    • BT +3.3% premarket. TEF +1.5%.
    | Comment!
  • 8:58 AM
    • Sarepta Therapeutics (NASDAQ:SRPT) is up 14% premarket on robust volume in response to BioMarin Pharmaceuticals' (NASDAQ:BMRN) announced acquisition of Prosensa Holding N.V. (NASDAQ:RNA) for $680M.
    • Some observers believe Sarepta's Duchenne muscular dystrophy drug eteplirsen is better than Prosensa's drisapersen which makes it a more attractive acquisition target.
    • Previously: BioMarin buys Prosensa
    • Previously: Sarepta +11.2% following FDA statement
    | Comment!
  • 8:40 AM
    • Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:TTPH) is reportedly considering selling itself after being approached by interested suitors. Sources say the acquirer could be Acetelion (OTCPK:ALIOF) (OTC:ALIOY) or Roche (OTCQX:RHHBY).
    • The attraction is Tetraphase's antibiotic eravacycline, currently in Phase 3 development. Both oral and IV formulations of the drug have demonstrated higher dose response rates than Johnson & Johnson's (NYSE:JNJ) Levaquin (levofloxacin) for the treatment of complicated urinary tract infections. In the Ignite-2 study, patients receiving 200 mg eravacycline IV-to-oral doses achieved a response rate of 70.8% while patients receiving 250 mg IV-to-oral doses achieved 64.3%, both significantly ahead of Levaquin's 52.2% response rate.
    • A trial comparing eravacycline to Merck's (NYSE:MRK) Invanz (ertapenem) for the treatment of complicated intra-abdominal infections is underway.
    • TTPH is up 18% premarket on light volume.
    • Previously: Tetraphase completes eravacycline Phase 3 enrollment
    | Comment!
  • 8:11 AM
    • 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD) agrees to acquire Israel's Cimatron (NASDAQ:CIMT) for ~$97M to strengthen its position in the 3D design and manufacturing business.
    • CIMT provides CAD and CAM software products and solutions for 3D manufacturing; DDD will pay $8.97/share, a 47.5% premium to CIMT's Nasdaq closing price on Friday.
    • CIMT +42.7% premarket, DDD +0.5%.
    | 22 Comments
  • 7:37 AM
    • The stock and cash deal currently works out to $76 per share for Platinum Underwriters (NYSE:PTP), a 24% premium to Friday's close. It's also 1.1x September 30 book value of $68.34.
    • Platinum owners will receive $10 per share in cash as a special pre-closing dividend, and may then elect to receive another $66 per share in cash or 0.6504 RenaissanceRe (NYSE:RNR) shares, or a combination of the two. The deal is expected to close in 2015 H1.
    • A conference call is set for 9 ET.
    • Source: Press Release
    • PTP +18.3% to $72.50 permarket
    | Comment!
DJIA (DIA) S&P 500 (SPY)
ETF Tools
Find the right ETFs for your portfolio:
Seeking Alpha's new ETF Hub
ETF Investment Guide:
Table of Contents | One Page Summary
Read about different ETF Asset Classes:
ETF Selector