Transactions UK

  • April 18, 2024

    Ex-Autonomy CEO Wanted Whistleblower Fired, Ex-GC Says

    Former Autonomy CEO Michael Lynch thought a finance department whistleblower was "trying to destroy the company" and wanted him fired, the software company's former U.S. general counsel testified Thursday in a criminal fraud trial over claims Lynch conned HP into buying the British company at an inflated price of $11.7 billion.

  • April 18, 2024

    EU Antitrust Chief Says Merger Tool Not A 'Power Grab'

    The European Commission's top competition enforcer said Thursday the agency has taken a measured approach to using its newly asserted power to review mergers that fall short of local thresholds, as the European trading bloc's high court mulls a challenge of that authority from DNA sequencing company Illumina.

  • April 18, 2024

    Coventry Building Society Makes £780M Offer For Co-Op Bank

    The Coventry Building Society is offering to buy the Co-operative Bank for £780 million ($970 million) in a move that comes after the two revealed in December that they were in exclusive talks to merge.

  • April 18, 2024

    Insurers Face Appeal Over Refusal To Cover Bribery Loss

    A holding company took its fight for an insurance payout to the Court of Appeal on Thursday, urging justices to force its insurers to cover its claim for losses it sustained when its acquisition of a construction contractor went south due to bribery and corruption allegations.

  • April 18, 2024

    Royal Mail Says It Rejected £3.2B Bid By Czech Mogul's Group

    The parent company of Britain's national postal carrier Royal Mail has confirmed that it rejected an approximately £3.2 billion ($4 billion) "opportunistic" bid from a European conglomerate controlled by Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky.

  • April 18, 2024

    London SPAC's £33M Buy Of Canadian Hydrogen Biz Lingers

    Blank-check company Pineapple Power said Thursday that it has not yet reached a "binding agreement" for the anticipated £33 million ($41 million) acquisition of Canadian hydrogen energy business Ilios Hydrogen Canada Ltd. that was announced in November.

  • April 18, 2024

    City Pushes For UK Regulators To Be Globally Competitive

    A body representing U.K. financial services called Thursday for a new post-Brexit international framework to compare regulators' performance and their impact on competitiveness.

  • April 18, 2024

    Insurance Broker Jensten Builds £170M Acquisition War Chest

    Private equity-backed insurance broker Jensten Group said Thursday it has secured £170 million ($211 million) in funding for a series of planned acquisitions.

  • April 18, 2024

    Kirkland, Weil-Guided Apax To Buy HR Payroll Co. For €36M

    Investment group Apax Global Alpha Ltd. said Thursday that it has agreed to buy Zellis UK Ltd., a prominent provider of payroll and HR software in the U.K. for approximately €36 million ($38.4 million), financed via one of its funds.

  • April 18, 2024

    Housebuilder Vistry To Return £100M To Shareholders

    Vistry Group PLC on Thursday announced the take-off of an up to £100 million ($125 million) share repurchase program, progressing with its plan to return £1 billion to investors across three years.

  • April 18, 2024

    Hipgnosis Agrees To $1.4B Takeover By US Rival Concord

    Concord Chorus has agreed to buy its British music royalties rival Hipgnosis Songs Fund in an all-cash transaction worth $1.4 billion, as the U.S. company looks to add 1.2 million more songs to its portfolio, the companies said in joint statement Thursday.

  • April 17, 2024

    Ex-JPMorgan Analyst Liked 'Winding Up' Autonomy CEO, Jury Told

    A former JPMorgan stock analyst testifying Wednesday in the criminal fraud trial of former Autonomy CEO Michael Lynch said that he "took pleasure in winding up Lynch" and once even used a Hitler analogy to describe his performance, but said his critical coverage was never personal.

  • April 17, 2024

    Royal Mail Rejects Takeover Approach From Czech Billionaire

    A European conglomerate owned by Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky said Wednesday that the parent company of Royal Mail has rejected its offer to take over Britain's national postal service.

  • April 17, 2024

    Agronomics Meat Unit Taps Investors For €40M Capital Raise

    Lab-grown meat company Agronomics said on Wednesday that its portfolio company Mosa Meat BV, a producer of alternatives to conventional beef, has raised €40 million ($42.5 million) in new capital to invest in the business.

  • April 17, 2024

    Standards Setter Proposes Steps To Boost Non-Bank Liquidity

    A global standards setter proposed on Wednesday new measures to enable non-bank financial firms such as hedge funds or insurers to better support their derivatives or securities positions in stressed markets.

  • April 17, 2024

    Public Property Invest To Float In Oslo In $162M IPO

    Norwegian commercial property company Public Property Invest said Wednesday that it has launched an initial public offering in Oslo to raise up to approximately 1.8 billion Norwegian krone ($162 million) with advice from Norwegian law firms Thommessen AS and Wikborg Rein.

  • April 17, 2024

    Steel Specialist Severfield To Launch £10M Share Buyback

    Severfield PLC said on Wednesday it intends to launch a share repurchase program worth up to £10 million ($12.5 million) aimed at rewarding investors and lowering its outstanding share capital.

  • April 17, 2024

    Vinci To Buy Controlling Stake In Edinburgh Airport For £1.3B

    Vinci SA said Wednesday that one of its subsidiaries has agreed to buy a 50.01% stake in Edinburgh Airport for £1.27 billion ($1.58 billion), as the French infrastructure giant eyes growth at the Scottish flight hub.

  • April 16, 2024

    Autonomy CEO Pressured JPMorgan Over Analyst, Jury Told

    An ex-JPMorgan stock analyst testifying Tuesday in the criminal fraud trial of former Autonomy CEO Michael Lynch told jurors that the software company founder responded with hostility when his research reports questioned its growth, and that Lynch offered JPMorgan millions in business if he were taken off the Autonomy beat.

  • April 16, 2024

    Amundi, Victory Capital Ink Strategic Partnership Agreement

    France's Amundi will merge its Amundi US unit with Texas-based Victory Capital in exchange for a 26.1% stake in the latter firm, in a deal that would bolster Amundi's U.S. presence while expanding Victory's worldwide distribution channels, the asset managers said Tuesday.

  • April 16, 2024

    McDermott Hires 2 Partners For Global Tax Practice In Paris

    McDermott Will & Emery is expanding its global tax practice group with two partners in Paris who have a track record of advising on cross-border mergers and acquisitions and tax controversies before France's tax authority, the firm announced. 

  • April 16, 2024

    London-Listed Ashoka India Equity Looking To Raise £415M

    Ashoka India Equity Investment Trust PLC said Tuesday that it is planning on a new share issuance program to raise equity as it seeks to amend its investment policy to allow more investors to invest in the company.

  • April 16, 2024

    Simmons & Simmons-Led Gas Biz To Buy Builder For £90.6M

    A Regent Group unit said Tuesday it has agreed to buy TClarke PLC, a building service contractor, for approximately £90.56 million ($112.8 million), as the U.K. gas supplier looks to control a business it has "long admired."

  • April 16, 2024

    International Paper Co. To Buy UK Rival DS Smith For £5.8B

    International Paper Co. said on Tuesday that it has agreed to acquire packaging provider DS Smith PLC in an all-share deal valuing the U.K. group at £5.8 billion ($7.2 billion), after fighting off a competing bid by Mondi PLC.

  • April 16, 2024

    HSF-Guided Hostmore To Buy TGI Fridays For £177M

    British restaurant group Hostmore said Tuesday that it has agreed to acquire the American-themed casual dining business TGI Fridays for an enterprise value of £177 million ($220 million) in a deal guided by Herbert Smith Freehills LLP and Ropes & Gray LLP.

Expert Analysis

  • Cum-Ex Prosecutions Storm Shows No Sign Of Abating

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    The ongoing trial of Sanjay Shah in Denmark is a clear indicator that efforts remain focused on holding to account the alleged architects and beneficiaries of cum-ex trading, and with these prosecutions making their way across Europe, it is a more turbulent time now than ever, says Niall Hearty at Rahman Ravelli.

  • Spartan Arbitration Tactics Against Well-Funded Opponents

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    Like the ancient Spartans who held off a numerically superior Persian army at the Battle of Thermopylae, trial attorneys and clients faced with arbitration against an opponent with a bigger war chest can take a strategic approach to create a pass to victory, say Kostas Katsiris and Benjamin Argyle at Venable.

  • EU Inquiry Offers First Insight Into Foreign Subsidy Law

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    The European Commission's first in-depth investigation under the Foreign Subsidies Regulation into a public procurement process, and subsequent brief on regulatory trends, sheds light on the commission's approach to such cases, as well as jurisdictional, procedural and substantive issues under the regulation, says Matthew Hall at McGuireWoods.

  • Key Points From EC Economic Security Screening Initiatives

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    Lawyers at Herbert Smith analyze the European Commission's five recently announced initiatives aimed at de-risking the EU's trade and investment links with third countries, including the implementation of mandatory screening mechanisms and extending coverage to investments made by EU companies that are controlled subsidiaries of non-EU investors.

  • Vodafone Decision Highlights Wide Scope Of UK's FDI Rules

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    The U.K. government’s recently imposed conditions required for its approval of Vodafone and Etisalat’s strategic relationship agreement under its National Security and Investment Act jurisdiction, illustrating the significance of the act as an important factor for transactions with a U.K. link, says Matthew Hall at McGuireWoods.

  • What Extension Of French FDI Control Means For Investors

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    The recently published French order on foreign investment control expands the regime's application to more sectors and at a lower threshold of share ownership, illustrating France's determination to maintain sovereignty over its supply chains in sensitive sectors, and adding new considerations for potential investors in these areas, say lawyers at Linklaters.

  • What To Expect For Private Capital Investment Funds In 2024

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    As 2024 gets underway, market sentiment in the private fundraising sphere seems more optimistic, with a greater focus on deal sourcing and operational optimizations, and an increased emphasis on impact and sustainability strategies, say lawyers at Ropes & Gray.

  • Cayman Islands Off AML Risk Lists, Signaling Robust Controls

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    As a world-leading jurisdiction for securitization special purpose entities, the removal of the Cayman Islands from increased anti-money laundering monitoring lists is a significant milestone that will benefit new and existing financial services customers conducting business in the territory, say lawyers at Walkers Global.

  • Acquisition Of AI Tech Poses Challenges For Media Industry

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    The artificial intelligence regulatory landscape is changing quickly, and media and entertainment companies planning to acquire AI technology through a merger, acquisition or licensing deal should be mindful of potential new compliance requirements and AI-specific insurance products, say lawyers at Covington.

  • Due Diligence Pointers After Entain Deferred Prosecution Deal

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    The Crown Prosecution Service's £615 million settlement with Entain last month signifies that the CPS is a serious enforcer of corporate crime, and illustrates the importance of carrying out a tailored risk assessment in preparation for and following an acquisition, say Matthew Cowie and Aziz Rahman at Rahman Ravelli.

  • What Can Be Learned From Adobe-Figma Merger Termination

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    The Competition and Markets Authority’s role in the recent termination of the proposed Adobe-Figma merger deal indicates the regulator's intention to be seen as a strong enforcer in the technology sphere, and serves as a warning for companies to address antitrust risks early on in the merger process, say Deirdre Taylor and Molly Heslop at Gibson Dunn.

  • How FCA Listing Regime Reform Proposals Are Developing

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    The Financial Conduct Authority’s recently proposed U.K. equity listings reforms maintain increased flexibility with a disclosure-based approach, but much of the new regime’s success will depend on the eligibility criteria used and whether additional governance will be required for inclusion, say lawyers at Debevoise.

  • US And UK Law Firms Continue Trend Of EU Expansion

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    A broad spectrum of U.S. and U.K. law firms are now seeking fresh opportunities in Europe's fastest growing and constantly evolving sectors by opening offices in strategic locations across the continent, says James Lavan at Buchanan Law.

  • A Look At 2023's Landmark Insolvency Developments

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    The insolvency landscape in 2023 witnessed pivotal court decisions that will continue to shape the industry in 2024, with a focus on refining director and administrator duties and obligations, and addressing emerging challenges, says Kerri Wilson at Ontier.

  • Regulating Digital Platforms: What's Changing In EU And UK

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    Lawyers at Mayer Brown assess the status of recently enacted EU and U.K. antitrust regulation governing gatekeeper platforms, noting that the effects are already being felt, and that companies will need to avoid anti-competitive self-preferencing and ensure a higher degree of interoperability than has been required to date.

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