M&A in the News

Expert insight and analysis on recent deals in the news.

The largest US-based retailer of cupcakes has agreed to sell to a Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC) called 57th Street General Acquisition Corp for $66 million.  A SPAC is a publicly traded company that raises capital for the purpose of buying companies – think of a private equity company only the money comes from investors […]

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Dell and HP are fighting each other to have 3PAR’s hand in marriage. It all formally started on August 16th with Dell attempting to acquire 3Par for  $18/share. Then on August 23rd, HP entered the race and raised the ante to $24/share.  On August 26, Dell raised its offer again to $24.30/share for an enterprise […]

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This has been an amazing past couple of weeks for the future of the M&A market.  Monday, August 2, was the sixth most active day of debt trading this year with $11.5 Billion placed according to Dealogic.    IBM raised $1.5B of 3-year debt for an astonishing 1%! Other takers of debt were ArcelorMittal, Citigroup, Credit […]

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This post was contributed by Capstone Senior Vice President Wes Teague: Lockheed Martin (LM), one of the country’s largest government contractors, recently announced its intention to sell or spin off one of its oldest and profitable units, the Enterprise Integration Group.  The EIG,  a unit of LM for 42 years and with revenues of over […]

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Private equity fundraising from 82 closed funds totaled only $41 Billion in the second quarter – the lowest level since 2003, according to the Private Equity Professional Digest. This is important news for strategic buyers because it continues to demonstrate that financial buyers will remain limited in their M&A activity – but that the clock […]

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Caterpillar announced it is acquiring Electro-Motive Diesel for $820 Million.  The company, which has revenues of about $1.8 billion is currently owned by two private equity firms who acquired it from General Motors in 2005 for around $200 million (read my other post about PE divesting before tax rates increase). Caterpillar already owns a railcar […]

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Congress is close to taxing “carried-interest” income on fund managers at 30% in 2011 from the current 15% capital gains rate. The rate is likely to go to 33% in 2013.  Congress may exclude the first 25% of income from this higher tax rate (which doesn’t really make sense to me) but the real story […]

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For nearly two years, Mergers & Acquisitions Daily has brought you a fresh perspective to the ever-changing world of M&A. As a veteran practitioner, I have fashioned a new approach to the challenges of external growth — a systematic process that has resulted in numerous successful deals across multiple industries. In this blog I share […]

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Nothing like today’s considerable drop in the market to remind everyone that the economy remains on shaky ground.  I stand by my past prediction that the market will not improve dramatically for another 12 months. This turmoil does two things.  It makes sellers more fearful that the bottom could fall out again and it may […]

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H-P is acquiring Palm for $1B and they say it is to position them further into the smartphone market which reportedly grew by over 60% last year.  H-P’s head of strategy, Shane Robison said “It’s an opportunity for us to get into a very big market”.   Understandable?  It is to me.  I’m not saying it’s […]

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Although it almost dipped back below today, the Dow broke the 11,000 mark earlier this week.  This psychological barrier will impact the M&A market since there is a strong correlation between the equities market and M&A, with M&A lagging a bit. I continue to expect an increase in deal making, with the biggest growth to […]

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Cerberus Capital Management agreed to acquire DynCorp for $1 Billion on April 12.  DynCorp is a Virginia-based defense contractor who focuses on low-technology, high people-centric government contracts in hostile areas like Afghanistan.  Cerberus, probably best known for its acquisition of Chrysler, sees this as a way to expand its government business. There were four things […]

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PWC reported recently that 46% of CEO’s in their survey indicate they plan to sell their company, and of these 66% said they plan to sell within the next five years.  The primary reason cited in the report is to diversify and create liquidity. My experience with CEO’s of privately held firms is they typically […]

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According to CFOs recently polled by Merrill Datasite, “87.1% of respondent are considering M&A activity as a means to grow.”   We at Capstone agree – the time is right to make a BOLD move – growing proactively through external growth.  Our clients are using acquisitions and investments to create a competitive advantage by adding capability […]

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I just spoke at the Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants Spring Conference and the general sentiment was cautious optimism for the next 12 months.  Several attendees mentioned they only see distressed companies selling and at 0.5x revenues.  Another mentioned his firm has lots of cash and no debt but they are hesitant to part […]

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“There are a lot of companies that are flushed with cash, they want to do deals and targets that feel that they are 20 percent below their historic highs so they are not as interested in doing a deal,” he explained. “So that’s the right territory for a lot of unsolicited bids.” I agree with […]

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Banks are still not lending much these days and last year  had their sharpest decline in lending in 67 years.  A friend who is a Vice President at a major US bank recently told me: “We have lots of money to lend, just no one that we want to lend it to.”   So how […]

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On this blog previously, David discussed some of the issues surrounding the AOL-Time Warner merger.  Given that the ten year anniversary of the merger was recently marked, I wanted to re-visit the ill-fated deal to explore it a little more in-depth. AOL and Time Warner merged to create the “world’s first Internet-age media and communications […]

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The New York Stock Exchange ended 2009 up nearly 30% over 2008.  That makes a lot of individuals feel better about the economy because they “feel” wealthier. Companies are no different.  With an up market we expect M&A activity to increase, generally as a laggard to the equities market.  Think about it:  a company’s stock […]

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According to the Wall Street Journal,  November 2009 was the biggest month in over a year for deals involving consumer products and food and drinks firms, with $12.54 billion in acquisitions.  And it doesn’t look like this momentum will be stopped.  Kettle Chips, Just for Men and Grecian Formula hair-coloring products, Aqua Velva cologne, Brylcreem hair […]

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