Rearview Insights: Arena Finishes Above $11, Campbell Buys Bolthouse Farms

Here’s your Cheat Sheet to all the matter chatter buzzing this past week:


Thomson Reuters (NYSE:TRI) is purchasing forex platform FX Alliance (FX) at $22 per share, which represents a 40 percent windfall over Friday’s close, totalling $625 million. Shareholders holding 32.5 percent of FX have agreed to tender their shares.

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Campbell Soup Company (NYSE:CPB) reports that it will acquire Bolthouse Farms for $1.55 billion in cash; the vertical merger is scheduled to close in late summer. The historic soup company predicts that the purchase will add between 5 and 7 cents to earnings per share in its fiscal year 2013.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) snaps up Perceptive Pixel, which is a developer of giant multi-touch display panels. It’s likely that Perceptive’s tech, which can detect dozens of points of contact, will be employed in Microsoft’s PixelSense display tables, plus possible applications for Windows 8 tablets and in all-in-one desktops.


WellPoint (NYSE:WLP) will acquire Amerigroup (NYSE:AGP) at $92 per share for cash, in a transaction valued close to $4.9 billion. The price represents a 43 percent premium on the Friday’s close, with the acquisition to close in the first quarter of 2013. Wellpoint shares are down today, but Americagroup is up one day after the announcement. The combined company should serve more than 4.5 million beneficiaries of state-sponsored healthcare plans. At the same time, shares of other Medicaid insurers are jumping, including those of Wellcare (NYSE:WCG) and Centene (NYSE:CNC).

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Sunday’s Bloomberg article from which potential mergers and acquisitions interest in drug developer Arena Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ARNA) helped to rally shares late Monday, and that rally continued in Tuesday trading, with shares up more than 4 percent mid-afternoon. All this action was ignited by the recent FDA approval of Arena’s weight-loss drug Belviq; observers believe that GlaxoSmithKline, which is currently divesting a diet pill line, or Japan’s Eisai, the U.S. launch partner for Belviq, might be potential suitors.

Micron’s (NASDAQ:MU) $750 million acquisition of the bankrupt Japanese chipmaker Elpida, is challenged by a group of the latter’s bondholders, who told a Tokyo district court that they intend to submit an alternative proposal to Micron’s bid. It isn’t certain if the group has sufficient votes to derail the deal, however.

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Truck maker Komatsu decides that it does not want to acquire Joy Global (NASDAQ:JOY) after all, following its conclusion that few synergies would be had, with which to help its move into underground mining equipment. Joy Global’s low valuation and industry mergers and acquisitions had made it the subject of takeover chatter in the first place.

Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) CEO Jim Rogers appears Tuesday before a hearing of the North Carolina Utilities Commission regarding the ouster of Bill Johnson, which took place only hours following the closure of Duke’s purchase of Progress Energy. The Commission has said that it might not have authorized the merger had it known about the “management structure”, and it does have power to rescind its approval.

Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE:BMY) initiates its $31 per share tender offer to purchase Amylin Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:AMLN), which is in effect until August 7th. Such a deal that would enlarge BMY’s portfolio of diabetes treatments.

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Wellpoint’s (NYSE:WLP) $4.46 billion purchase of Amerigroup (NYSE:AGP) is welcomed by Oppenheimer and other analysts, commenting that the acquisition “creates a leading Medicaid platform primed for robust growth.” Oppenhiemer keeps its Outperform on the stock; the transaction will be reviewed by 15 states, including Kansas.

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Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL) snaps up yet another social media marketing startup, Involver being the target this time. The latter offers a platform which brands can utilize so as to build custom Facebook pages and applications, and also to manage social media conversations on multiple networks. The buyer recently also purchased Collect Intellect and Vitrue, but elected not to buy Buddy Media, a subsequent $689 million acquisition by (NYSE:CRM).

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Want news like this in real-time so you can get an edge? Click here for Wall St. Cheat Sheet Pro.Glencore’s (GLCNF.PK) potential acquisition of Xstrata (XSRAF.PK) will be voted on by shareholders of the latter on September 7th. The date coincides with negotiations with Qatar, which is insisting upon improved term in the deal. Before this announcement, Xstrata shareholders had been scheduled to meet on Thursday.

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More inklings as to why Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) sacked Bill Johnson subsequent to its merger with Progress Energy have emerged from comments by the new Duke CEO Jim Rogers, testifying before a hearing of the North Carolina Utilities Commission on Tuesday. Rogers said that the dismissal was in part due to Johnson’s ‘autocratic leadership style’, and also persisting worries concerning Progress Energy’s nuclear assets, plus the utility’s poor performance since the deal was first announced some 18 months ago.

Noble Energy (NYSE:NBL) is divesting 900 wells in Oklahoma and Texas that produce natural gas and some oil, to Unit Corp. (NYSE:UNT) for $617 million in cash. The agreement is part of the former’s strategy of selling off non-core assets, which is expected to help finance both its international expansion, and its oil stakes in the Denver Basin. Unit expects to finance the acquisition with long-term debt.


In its fourth extension to the same firm, Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) extends its bid for Cove Energy to July 25th. As of Wednesday, only 3.27 percent of Cove’s shares had been tendered to Shell.

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Vodafone (NASDAQ:VOD) acquires Telstra’s struggling operations in New Zealand for NZ$840 million, or $670 million. The division serves only 16 percent of New Zealand’s broadband market, but Vodafone’s ownership will enable it to compete much more aggressively with top player Telecom New Zealand (NYSE:NZT)


Watson Pharmaceuticals’ (NYSE:WPI) €4.25 billion ($5.6 billion) proposed purchase of the Swiss generic drug firm Actavis Group, has drawn a FTC request for further details. The former remains confident that the transaction will close in the fourth quarter.

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A bit of false takeover drama on Thursday, as Pandora (NYSE:P) shares took off on chatter that the company might be acquired by Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA), even though such a merger of two entities with such distinct cultures didn’t quite sound right to industry observers. Pandora shares rose sharply but then fell back, when a source claimed that Comcast isn’t going to bid on the top Internet radio player.

The Washington Post (NYSE:WPO) is said to have wound up purchasing Digg’s team for a price of $12 million, as a part of the recent sale of the company, which at one time was an up and coming news-sharing site that could not subsequently compete with Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Twitter. At the same time, LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) bought 15 of Digg’s patents for between $3.75 million and $4million. The Digg site itself went to the private equity firm Betaworks for between $500,000 and-$725,000.

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The European Commission is likely to unconditionally okay Cisco’s (NASDAQ:CSCO) $5 billion purchase of set-top box software company NDS, according to Reuters. NDS is 49 percent owned by News Corp. (NWS, NWSA), is expected to improve the reach of Cisco’s set-top box/cable infrastructure division in emerging markets, and could further reinforce the company’s endeavors to deliver cloud video solutions to the providers of pay-TV.

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Want news like this in real-time so you can get an edge? Click here for Wall St. Cheat Sheet Pro.Enough with the dilly-dallying, says the United Kingdom’s Takeover Panel, in regards to the eternally ongoing Cove Energy saga. Would-be suitors Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDSA) and Thailand’s PTT have been given until Monday to make their final bids, and if none are accepted, an auction will commence on Tuesday. The likelihood that shareholders are not excited over either offer might have something to do with this.

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Were you really a dictator, Mr. Johnson? That is a likely question, perhaps not as blunt, that the former Progress Energy CEO Bill Johnson will have to field next week before the North Carolina Utilities Commission, as it examines his being sacked only hours after the firm’s merger with Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) CEO Jim Rogers has already testified that Johnson’s autocratic style was a major reason for the move.

Liberty (NASDAQ:LMCA) Chairman John Malone wants his firm’s bailout money back, after saving Sirius (NASDAQ:SIRI) in 2009, which might be why Liberty is trying to increase its control in the satellite radio broadcaster to 50 percent. Malone commented to the Wall Street Journal, that Sirius needs make a stake in developing the “next generation or two of service,” which includes an Internet version, and globalizing.

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