M&A Weekly Recap: DigitalGlobe Disses GeoEye Bid, Bed Bath & Beyond Buys Cost Plus

Monday

DigitalGlobe (NYSE:DGI) turns down a hostile bid worth $792 million from GeoEye (NASDAQ:GEOY), describing it as one that both “substantially undervalues the company” and its financial prospects.

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Victory at last. Control of refiner CVR Energy (NYSE:CVI) finally goes to Carl Icahn, as a minimum of 63 percent of its shares that are not already owned by Icahn affiliates were tendered to his $30 per share offer. However, the ‘activist investor’ is carrying his bid over until May 18, in hopes of ending up with more than 90 percent, in which case he intends to merge CVR with an affiliate, or even sell his acquisition outright.

Talbots (NYSE:TLB) receives an acquisition bid of $3.05 per share from Sycamore Partners, but the hiring of Perella Weinberg Partners to evaluate the bid and other strategic alternatives, might indicate that the deal will be turned down, perhaps because of the narrow premium.

A judge has put Martin Marietta Materials (NYSE:MLM) proxy challenge and hostile bid of $4.8 billion for Vulcan Materials (NYSE:VMC), on hold for four months, but the former says that it will appeal, as it waits for its annual shareholders’ meeting on June 1st. The company is working to get its four directors elected at that time, to Vulcan’s board.

PHH Mortgage (NYSE:PHH) and HSBC’s (NYSE:HBC) U.S. operation form a strategic arrangement, in which they will supply private-label, end-to-end mortgage origination and loan servicing services. The partnership will obtain fee revenue for the former’s income statement, but not mortgages onto its balance sheet.

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Wednesday

Chatter that GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK) will take its $13 per share offer directly to Human Genome (NASDAQ:HGSI) shareholders sent GSK shares down Wednesday. However the firm believes that the $2.6 billion offer is “full and fair” and it says that it will initiate the tender offer this week. Further, Glaxo remains “willing to meet and review its offer with HGS at any time”, but says that its takeover target has had ample time to complete its evaluation of alternatives.

Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO) shares rise a bit, as it agrees to purchase private equity Paloma Partners II for $750 million in cash. Paloma which owns around 17,000 net acres in the Eagle Ford shale play, and reports that net production as of April 1 was approximately 7,000 barrels of oil equivalent daily.

Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ:BBBY) buys Cost Plus (NASDAQ:CPWM) for $22 per share in an all cash transaction. The company predicts that the acquisition will be “slightly” accretive to fiscal year 2012 earnings.

Westinghouse Solar (NASDAQ:WEST) and privately held CBD Energy agree to merge.

Avon Products (NYSE:AVP) shares move up solidly following news that a Coty shareholder to divest Reckitt Benckiser (RBGPY.PK) shares, a move that ignites chatter that a new bid for AVP could be moving forward.

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Thursday

Rumors that Micron (NASDAQ:MU) wants to buy bankrupt Japanese chipmaker Elpida Memory are partly confirmed, as the former says that it is indeed in talks over the matter. However, there is no official comment on media reports that Micron has offered more than ¥200 billion ($2.5 billion) for Elpida.

The Avon (NYSE:AVP) – Coty courtship continues, as the latter increases its bid from $23.25 to $24.75, and says that the new offer represents “$1 billion of incremental value” to Avon’s shareholders. Avon has until Monday to respond and until May 31st to decide whether there is “a mutually agreeable basis for a transaction”. The new offer is worth $10.69 billion, which is up from $10 billion originally, with Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRKA) providing part of the equity financing and JPMorgan (JBM) the debt. For its part, Avon will consider the letter in which the offer was made “in due course”.

Facebook’s (FB) purchase of Instagram is now the object of an FTC investigation, sources say, which will possibly delay the transaction’s closing until after the second quarter. Indeed, the inquiry could take 6 to 12 months, which will put off FB’s integration of Instagram’s tech and staff. This comes as Mark Zuckerberg’s road show is in progress, and is not a good prospect in a very fast-moving industry.

EMC (NYSE:EMC) buys Israel-based flash storage company XtremIO in an all-cash deal, in which terms were not reported. The acquisition will not have an impact upon the fiscal year 2012 results. Globes says that the purchase price was $430 million, against earlier estimates of between $400 million and $450 million.

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Friday

The communications market in the U.S. is considered to be mature, so domestic carriers need to make acquisitions in order to grow. To that effect, AT&T (NYSE:T) has reportedly held discussions to purchase its competitor, Leap Wireless (NASDAQ:LEAP), according to sources. Though the talks were said to have been earnest, it’s not certain if they are still ongoing.

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Shares of Fusion-io (NYSE:FIO) jump, on chatter that the firm has rejected a bid of $33 per share from Dell (NASDAQ:DELL). No comment was given in response by the latter.

Advocat (NASDAQ:AVCA) shares go through the roof, following an acquisition bid by private equity long-term care provider Covington Investments, for $8.50 a share in cash. Covington has units in Ohio, Tennessee and Florida.

Chatter that LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) and privately held Silver Lake are prepping an offer for Monster Worldwide (NYSE:MWW) sends its shares flying. The latter had already initiated a strategic review in March, says Reuters, and also that it’s getting data ready for potential suitors.

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