TPG plunges on doubt over merger plans

Original article by James Fernyhough
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 17 & 22 : 14-Dec-18

Australian Competition & Consumer Competition chairman Rod Sims says its preliminary view on the proposed merger between Vodafone Hutchison Australia and TPG Telecom is that it will lead to less competition. The ACCC will delay its decision on the $15 billion merger for three months, while Sims’ comments caused TPG’s share price to fall by 16.7 per cent on 13 December. Vodafone CEO Inaki Berroeta says the merger with TPG is still on track, and that it will be good for consumers.

CORPORATES
VODAFONE HUTCHISON AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, TPG TELECOM LIMITED – ASX TPM, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, MORGAN STANLEY AUSTRALIA LIMITED, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD

BHP left holding Chilean mine after deal collapses

Original article by James Thomson
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 23 : 14-Dec-18

Private equity firm EMR Capital will not proceed with a deal to buy BHP Group’s Cerro Colorado copper mine in Chile. EMR has advised that the $US320m ($443m) transaction has been abandoned due to problems in meeting its deadline to secure financing. The deal had been announced in June; EMR recently acquired a majority stake in a copper mine in Zambia.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, EMR CAPITAL PTY LTD, RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, PT ADARO ENERGY TBK

Merged miners see more gold deals on horizon

Original article by Paul Garvey
The Australian – Page: 24 : 12-Dec-18

Gold miner Horizon Minerals will have a market capitalisation of around $64m and will be headed by Intermin Resources MD Jon Price. Horizon has been formed via a merger between Intermin and MacPhersons Resources, and Price says the new company already has its sights on potential gold acquisitions in Western Australia. Other recent deals in Australia’s gold sector include the merger between Silver Lake Resources and Doray Minerals.

CORPORATES
HORIZON MINERALS LIMITED, INTERMIN RESOURCES LIMITED – ASX IRC, MACPHERSONS RESOURCES LIMITED – ASX MRP, SILVER LAKE RESOURCES LIMITED – ASX SLR, DORAY MINERALS LIMITED – ASX DRM, BARDOC GOLD LIMITED – ASX BDC, EXCELSIOR GOLD LIMITED

Nine holds its ground over Singo buyout

Original article by Nick Tabakoff
The Australian – Page: 25 & 27 : 10-Dec-18

Nine CEO Hugh Marks says he has held talks with advertising industry veteran John Singleton about buying his 32 per cent stake in Macquarie Media. However, Marks has dismissed speculation that Nine will pay at least $2 per share to take full ownership of Macquarie in the wake of the merger with Fairfax Media. Marks also says Nine is committed to retaining the print editions of Fairfax’s key mastheads. He adds that the websites of Fairfax newspapers are likely to feature more of Nine’s video content, but Fairfax content will in turn largely continue to be exclusive.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED – ASX FXJ, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN, 2GB, 3AW SOUTHERN CROSS RADIO PTY LTD, RADIO 4BC BRISBANE PTY LTD, DOMAIN HILL PROPERTY GROUP PTY LTD, DELOITTE TOUCHE TOHMATSU LIMITED

Volatility can’t stop deal-hungry companies

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Australian – Page: 21 & 25 : 7-Dec-18

Herbert Smith Freehills partner Tony Damian believes that 2019 will be a stronger year than 2018 for mergers and acquisitions, and John Pickhaver of Macquarie Capital is similarly optimistic. Herbert Smith Freehills predicts that superannuation funds will show a continued willingness to be directly involved in M&A deals in 2019, while healthcare, property and infrastructure are tipped to be popular sectors for M&A activity in 2019. Announced 2018 Australian M&A deals totalled $US155.9 billion ($215.4 billion) as of 5 December, according to Refinitiv.

CORPORATES
HERBERT SMITH FREEHILLS PTY LTD, MACQUARIE CAPITAL PTY LTD, GRAINCORP LIMITED – ASX GNC, HEALTHSCOPE LIMITED – ASX HSO, COLES GROUP LIMITED – ASX COL, WESFARMERS LIMITED – ASX WES, GREENCROSS LIMITED – ASX GXL, TPG TELECOM LIMITED – ASX TPM, VODAFONE AUSTRALIA LIMITED, AUSTRALIANSUPER PTY LTD, BGH CAPITAL PTY LTD, APA GROUP – ASX APA, CHEUNG KONG (HOLDINGS) LIMITED, BINGO INDUSTRIES LIMITED – ASX BIN, DIAL A DUMP INDUSTRIES PTY LTD, REFINITIV

Macquarie Media shares jump as Nine confirms mop-up talks

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich, Bridget Carter
The Australian – Page: 19 : 6-Dec-18

Nine Entertainment Company has advised that it has held preliminary talks about moving to full ownership of Macquarie Media when the merger with Fairfax Media is completed. The enlarged Nine will have a 54.5 per cent stake in the radio stations owner, ahead of advertising industry veteran John Singleton with a 32 per cent stake. Shares in Macquarie rose 12.6 per cent to $2.06 on 5 December. Media reports have suggested that Nine is likely to offer around $2 per share for Macquarie.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED – ASX FXJ, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN, WILSON ASSET MANAGEMENT, HADIAC PTY LTD, 2GB, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, DOMAIN HOLDINGS AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX DHA, 9NOW

GrainCorp holds out on $3.3bn bidder

Original article by Andrew White
The Australian – Page: 17 & 20 : 4-Dec-18

Belinda Moore of Morgans Financial has described a $3.3bn takeover bid for GrainCorp as "opportunistic" due to the drought on Australia’s east coast. Meanwhile, GrainCorp directors are seeking more information on the financial backers of Long-Term Asset Partners, whose offer of $10.42 per share represents a premium of 43 per cent to GrainCorp’s closing price on 30 November. LTAP is chaired by Australian businessman Tony Shepherd. GrainCorp shares closed $1.95 higher at $9.25 on 3 December.

CORPORATES
RANCOR LIMITED – ASX GNC, LONG-TERM ASSET PARTNERS PTY LTD, MORGANS FINANCIAL LIMITED, GOLDMAN SACHS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, ELLERSTON CAPITAL PTY LTD, PERPETUAL LIMITED – ASX PPT, ARCHER DANIELS MIDLAND COMPANY, BGH CAPITAL PTY LTD, AUSTRALIANSUPER PTY LTD, NAVITAS LIMITED – ASX NVT, HEALTHSCOPE LIMITED – ASX HSO, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, LONG TERM ALPHA ONE, LONG-TERM ASSET PARTNERS NOMINEES, AURIZON HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX AZJ, DEUTSCHE BANK AG, WESTBOURNE CAPITAL PTY LTD, AUSTRALIA. FOREIGN INVESTMENT REVIEW BOARD

Nine swings axe as Fairfax newsrooms reviewed

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 17 & 20 : 4-Dec-18

Nine Entertainment Company will comprise four divisions following its merger with Fairfax Media. Nine CEO Hugh Marks has advised staff that about 92 jobs will be lost as a result of the merger, although newsroom jobs will not be affected. Nine’s existing management team will largely helm the new divisions, while key Fairfax executives will exit following the merger. They include CEO Greg Hywood and CFO David Housego. The merger is expected to generate annual cost savings of around $50m.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED – ASX FXJ, STUFF LIMITED, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, 9NOW, DOMAIN HOLDINGS AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX DHA, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, DELOITTE TOUCHE TOHMATSU LIMITED

Don’t kill off mastheads, Nine warned

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 24 & 26 : 3-Dec-18

David Kirk anticipates further consolidation in Australia’s media sector following the merger between Nine Entertainment Company and Fairfax Media. Kirk, who was Fairfax’s CEO from 2005 to 2008, has urged Nine to retain the media group’s metropolitan mastheads, arguing that they are still a valuable asset. Kirk expects the merger to generate some cost synergies, although he questions its benefits in terms of revenue and profit margins. The newly-enlarged Nine is slated to commence trading on 10 December.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED – ASX FXJ, DOMAIN HOLDINGS AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX DHA, BAILADOR TECHNOLOGY INVESTMENTS LIMITED – ASX BTI, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, UBS HOLDINGS PTY LTD

End of an era: Fairfax bows out of the ASX

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 19 : 29-Nov-18

Shares in Fairfax Media rose 2.3 per cent to $0.66 on 28 November, before the stock was suspended from trading ahead of its delisting. Fairfax’s merger with Nine Entertainment Company is slated to be completed on 7 December, with the combined entity set to begin trading three days later. Fairfax had listed on the stock exchange in its present form in May 1992, with its shares closing at $0.9086 on debut.

CORPORATES
FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED – ASX FXJ, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, DOMAIN HOLDINGS AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX DHA, AURORA FUNDS MANAGEMENT LIMITED, AUSBIL INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT LIMITED, FIL INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT LIMITED, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN