M&A

The following has been reported in the newspapers referred to below: 

  • Swedish home security company Securitas Direct has received a joint unsolicited takeover bid of US$1.5bn from three of its largest shareholders and Swedish private-equity firm EQT (FT, November 14, 2007, p. 18; WSJE, November 14, 2007, p. 4) 
  • The Kazakhstan Stock Exchange has announced that Italian bank Unicredit has paid US$2.1bn for 91.8% of Kazakhstan’s ATF Bank (FT, November 14, 2007, p. 18) 
  • Dutch pension fund ABP is in exclusive talks with fellow Dutch fund Cordares with a view to a possible takeover (FT, November 14, 2007, p. 18) 
  • US multinational computer technology corporation Microsoft Corp. intends to buy Musiwave SA, a French unit of US company Openwave Systems Inc. that provides mobile musical services to operators and media companies. The terms of the deal were not disclosed (WSJE, November 14, 2007, p. 7) 
  • German car-maker Daimler AG is understood to have bought the city of Hamburg’s 6% stake in DCLRH, the umbrella holding for the car-maker’s stake in EADS, the European aerospace corporation, for €450m (FT, November 14, 2007, p. 20) 
  • The following concentration has been notified to the European Commission: 
    • 3i Group/Global Garden Products — Candidate case for simplified procedure (manufacture and sale of a variety of powered garden tools and equipment for household and professional use) (OJ C 271, 14 November 2007, p. 16) 
    • The following concentrations have been cleared by the European Commission: 
    • Allianz GI/Xchanging Transaction Bank/Fondsdepot Bank (administration of investment fund accounts) (OJ C 271, 14 November 2007, p. 1) 
    • PSA/IPH/JV (container terminal at Great Yarmouth in the UK) (OJ C 271, 14 November 2007, p. 1)

State Aid 

  • The European Commission has launched an in-depth investigation to determine whether a €96 million aid that France plans to grant to French car-maker Peugeot-Citroën and other partners for the development of a hybrid diesel car (VHD) is compatible with EC Treaty state aid rules (RAPID, October 13, 2007; FT, November 14, 2007, p. 2) 
  • The European Commission has opened a formal investigation to examine whether France's plan to grant tax aid to insurers for managing certain insurance policies ("contrats solidaires" and "contrats responsables") is compatible with the rules on state aid in the EC Treaty (RAPID, November 14, 2007) 
  • Authorisation for State aid pursuant to Articles 87 and 88 of the EC Treaty — Cases where the Commission raises no objections (OJ C 271, 14 November 2007, p. 2) 
    • Portugal – Manufacturing industry 
    • Belgium - Aviation

Other 

  • On November 13, 2007, the European Commission announced the opening of an in-depth investigation into the proposed €2.12bn takeover of US internet advertising company DoubleClick by US internet company Google (RAPID, November 13, 2007; FT, November 14, 2007, p. 1; WSJE, November 14, 2007, p. 3) 
  • On November 14, 2007, the European Commission is expected to unveil the results of an extensive enquiry into online air ticket sales which was carried out at the end of September to check whether online selling practices comply with EU legislation on consumer protection (Europolitics, November 14, 2007, p. 9) 
  • The European Commission has decided to send Hungary a letter of formal notice concerning legislation it has enacted "amending certain acts relating to companies of particular importance for the security of public supply" which the Commission considers may contain unjustified restrictions on the free movement of capital and the right of establishment (RAPID, November 14, 2007)