M&A Roundup

Goldman Sachs and Associated British Ports Holdings; Axa and Winterthur; Tenaris and Maverick Tube; Credit Agricole and Emporiki Bank of Greece; Ar...
Helen ShawJune 14, 2006

• A consortium led by Goldman Sachs Group has agreed to acquire Associated British Ports Holdings for $4.6 billion. The consortium’s bid for the U.K.’s largest port company is 11 percent higher than its original March 29 offer. The investor group includes the government of Singapore and a unit of a Canadian pension fund.

• Axa, Europe’s second-largest insurance company, has agreed to purchase Winterthur, Credit Suisse Group’s insurance unit, for $9.9 billion in cash. The deal, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2006, would provide Axa with 13 million new clients in 17 countries.

• Tenaris, the world’s largest supplier of seamless gas and oil pipes, has agreed to acquire Maverick Tube for approximately $2.6 billion, financed with cash and debt. The combined companies would have annual revenues of $9 billion. Tenaris, a unit of Techint Argentina, would be able to expand into the United States and Canada if the acquisition of Missouri-based Maverick is approved.

• Credit Agricole has offered $3.9 billion in cash for Emporiki Bank of Greece. The French bank has been an Emporiki shareholder since 2000 and holds the largest private stake in the Greek bank, at 8.93 percent.

• Arcelor, the world’s second-largest steelmaker, has rebuffed a hostile bid by Mittal Steel, which made a January 27 offer that also was declined. Meanwhile, rebel shareholders in Arcelor who oppose its pending acquisition of OAO Severstal, Russia’s number-three steelmaker, won the right to put the matter to a vote at Arcelor’s June 30 shareholder meeting. Arcelor management favors the Severstal deal; the shareholder group favors the bid from Mittal.

• Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria, Spain’s second-largest bank, has agreed to acquire two banks in Texas for a total of $2.64 billion: $2.16 billion for Texas Regional Bancshares and $480 million for State National Bancshares. The deal is the Spanish bank’s largest move into the United States.

• Plains All American Pipeline has agreed to buy Pacific Energy Partners for approximately $1.9 billion in cash and stock. Plains will also assume about $425 million in Pacific Energy debt, boosting the total value of the deal to about $2.4 billion.

• Swiss Re has completed its acquisition of GE Insurance Solutions for $7.8 billion, comprising $5.4 billion in cash and 33.3 million shares of Swiss Re common stock, plus the assumption of $1.7 billion in debt. Following the transaction, GE holds a 9 percent stake in Swiss Re.

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