Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Palm (PALM) Higher on Renewed Takeover Chatter

Palm, Inc. (Nasdaq: PALM) is moving higher on resurfaced chatter the company could be the target of a takeover. A few publications are reporting on the rumors today, which got going again on 02/15. The stock is up 3.5% in mid-day action.


Reports Mitsui & Co will buy Steel Technologies (STTX)

Reports from Bloomberg, citing Nikkei English News, Mitsui & Co will buy Steel Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq: STTX) for more than $422 million. The report did not say were the information was acquired, but said an announcement is scheduled for today.

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Citigroup Said Sprint Nextel (S) Remains a Potential Candidate for M&A

Citigroup upgraded Sprint Nextel (NYSE: S) from Hold to Buy today. Citigroup analyst, Michael Rollins, says, "We are upgrading Sprint to a Buy rating with an upwardly revised target price of $25 as we believe the company is better positioned to pursue a restructuring of its marketing and operations, generate net add momentum beginning in the 2H07, and remain a potential candidate for M&A."

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Monday, February 26, 2007

Dow Jones Reports Magna Int'l (MGA) has Contacted Major Labor Unions as Part of Due Diligence Process For Possible Acquisition of Chrysler (DCX)

Dow Jones report says Magna Int'l (NYSE: MGA) has contacted major labor unions as part of the due diligence process in a decision on whether or not to bid from DaimlerChrysler's (NYSE: DCX) Chrysler unit.
The report cites Canadian Auto Workers President, Buzz Hargrove, saying Magna has entered into discussions with the union regarding the study of Chrysler.

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Deutsche Bank said the Private equity buyout of TXU is positive for IPP stocks: NRG, CEG, MIR, EXC, RRI,

Deutsche Bank said the Private equity buyout of TXU (NYSE: TXU) is positive for IPP stocks. The firm sees NRG Energy (NYSE: NRG), Constellation Energy Group (NYSE: CEG), Mirant (NYSE: MIR), Exelon (NYSE: EXC) and Reliant Energy (NYSE: RRI) as the biggest beneficiaries of these more robust valuations.

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Reports DaimlerChrysler AG Could Take GM Stake As Part of Chrysler Deal

According to reports from the Financial Times, DaimlerChrysler AG (NYSE: DCX) may take a minority stake in General Motors (NYSE: GM) as financial consideration for a deal to merge with the Chrysler unit.

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Dow Chemical (DOW) Higher on Reports of Private Equity Bid

Shares of Dow Chemical Co. (NYSE: DOW) are higher in pre-open action on rumors reported in the Sunday Express that the company could be the target of a leveraged buyout.
The paper said the company could receive a $54 billion bid from a consortium of private equity buyers that could include KKR, Blackstone and Carlyle Group. The bid could come in at $60 per share the paper reported.

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

STMicroelectronics NV (STM) Higher on Takeover Rumor

STMicroelectronics NV (NYSE: STM) is 2.5% higher today on heaiver-than-normal volume on rumors the company is the target of a takeover bid.

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Loeb's Calls For Acorda Therapeutics (ACOR) To Sell

Daniel S. Loeb's Third Point LLC sent a letter to Acorda Therapeutics (Nasdaq: ACOR) stating the Board of Directors should immediately retain an investment bank and pursue a process to sell the Company in its entirety

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Analyst Says Aristocrat May Look to Acquire Bally Technologies (BYI)

Davenport notes that late yesterday speculation emerged that Aristocrat may look to acquire Bally Technologies (NYSE: BYI). Analyst George L Smith III said, "While we typically do not comment on speculation and have no idea if this has any merit, it does draw attention to M&A feasibility in the space and we do think such a combination could make sense on a number of levels. Moreover, we continue to think BYI is a great story takeout aside. We reiterate our Buy rating and $27 target. If nothing else, speculation should help draw more attention to a neglected turnaround story."

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Select Equity Group Opposes Management-Led Buyout of Laureate Education (LAUR)

In a 13D filing after the close on Laureate Education, Inc. (Nasdaq: LAUR) Select Equity Group disclosed a letter sent to the Board of Directors expressing their reservations about the management-led buyout transaction at $60.50 per share.

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Jupitermedia (JUPM) Confirms Takeover Talks with Getty Images (GYI)

Jupitermedia Corporation (Nasdaq: JUPM), in response to recent market activity and published news, confirmed that it is currently in discussions with Getty Images, Inc. (NYSE: GYI) regarding a potential sale of the company to Getty Images in a cash transaction that would be valued at $9.60 per share.

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Cramer Discusses Possible Anti-Competitive Mergers

On Mad Money, Jim Cramer discusses possible anti-competitive mergers that could pass regulatory mustard now, but may not in the future with a White House administration change. Cramer said we may see a rush of deals ahead of the change.

10. Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) and Safeway Inc. (NYSE: SWY) could merge

9. Quest Diagnostics Inc. (NYSE: DGX) and Laboratory Corp. (NYSE: LH) could merge

8. Carnival Corp. (NYSE: CCL) and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE: RCL) could merge

7. Office Depot, Inc. (NYSE: ODP) and OfficeMax Inc. (NYSE: OMX) could merge

6. Cardinal Health Inc. (NYSE: CAH) and McKesson Corp. (NYSE: MCK) could merge

5. BP plc (NYSE: BP) and Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) could merge

4. Lockheed Martin Corp. (NYSE: LMT) and Northrop Grumman Corp. (NYSE: NOC) could merge

3. Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA) and Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWX), (NYSE: TWC) could merge

2. Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI) and McClatchy Co. (NYSE: MNI) could merge

1. Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp. (NYSE: BNI) and Union Pacific Corp. (NYSE: UNP) could merge or Norfolk Southern Corp. (NYSE: NSC) and CSX Corp. (NYSE: CSX) could merge.

Large LESCO (LSCO) Holder Hawkshaw Capital Disappointed with Deere (DE) Takeover Offer

In a 13D filing on LESCO Inc. (Nasdaq: LSCO) 13.6% holder Hawkshaw Capital disclosed a letter to the company expressing their dissatisfaction with the $14.50 takeover offer from Deere & Co. (NYSE: DE). The firm said the intrinsic value is significantly higher than what Deere & Co. is offering.

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Analyst Notes Rumors Magna International (MGA) Could Be Interested in Chrysler group

In a note this afternoon from KeyBanc on Magna International (NYSE: MGA), analyst Brett Hoselton notes that a source at Toronto's Financial Post said MGA may be considering acquiring the Chrysler group from DaimlerChrysler (NYSE: DCX). The analyst views this as a low probability event.

Magna International is an auto-parts maker based in Ontario.

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ValueAct Capital offers to acquire Catalina Marketing (POS) for $32 per share

ValueAct Capital offers to acquire Catalina Marketing (NYSE: POS) for $32 per share. ValueAct owns 15.5% of POS.

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Reports ECI Telecom (ECIL) Could Be For Sale

According to reports from, controlling shareholders of ECI Telecom (Nasdaq: ECIL) are negotiating to sell the company, citing sources close to the talks. Link

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Karsch Capital Wants CSK Auto (CAO) To Initiate a Sale Process Immediately

CSK Auto Corp (NYSE: CAO) 9.4% holder Karsch Capital Management sent another letter to the Board in which it revised the timing of its request that the company actively pursue a sale of the entire company.

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Citigroup Dicusses 11 Possible LBO Targets

Citigroup issued a report discussing 11 LBO ideas.
Analog Devices (NYSE: ADI): the firm said, "ADI has LBO/divestiture and LBO/re-IPO value creation potential because it has partitioned business segments with mismatched profitability."

Maxim Integrated Products (Nasdaq: MXIM): the firm said, "We view Maxim Integrated as a possible transaction candidate given its scale, the unusual stability and quality of its free cash flow."

Bearingpoint Inc. (NYSE: BE): the firm said, "A transaction is unlikely until after BE catches up on its S.E.C. filings, which is anticipated to be a 3Q07 event." Also said, "We assume a take-out price of $12, consistent with our target price."

DST Systems (NYSE: DST): the firm said, "we believe the company's high level of recurring revenue and valuable investment portfolio makes it an appropriate candidate for this list. Assuming at per share takeout price of $91, which represents an approximate 25% premium to current levels, our LBO analysis reveals a potential 25% IRR."

First Data Corp. (NYSE: FDC): the firm said, "We believe that Buy-Rated FDC represents a more interesting LBO possibility following its recent spin-off of Western Union (WU) than its screen rank of 52 might otherwise indicate"

Fair Isaac Corp. (NYSE: FIC): the firm said, "Our decision to consider FIC as a top LBO candidate is based more on our qualitative view of the business than the quantitative valuation factors."

Credence Systems Corp. (Nasdaq: CMOS): the firm said, "... while we rate shares of CMOS Hold (2S) with a $5 price target given our view of back-end fundamentals and near-term risk from a big "air-pocket" in orders from major customer AMD, we believe the potential for further restructuring provides sufficient leverage in the model longer-term for a private equity interest. Assuming a 20% takeout premium (or a buyout price of roughly $6/share)."

KLA Tencor (Nasdaq: KLAC): the firm said, "... believe the potential for further restructuring (already planned) provides sufficient leverage in the model longer-term for private equity interest. Assuming a 20% takeout premium (or a buyout price of roughly $60/share), our proprietary model suggests KLAC would generate an IRR of 35%."

Cypress Semiconductor (NYSE: CY): the firm said, "Although Cypress Semiconductor (2S) did not rank highly in our initial quantitative screening, we believe that it has the potential for an LBO or changes in capital structure for three main reasons (a) Management has expressed strong willingness to consider an LBO (b) IRR analysis on the core Cypress business (excluding SunPower) yielded a return of 24% which is above the industry specific hurdle rate of 20% and (c) We believe that there is room for operational improvements that can drive increases in gross margin, independent of an LBO transaction."

Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. (Nasdaq: CHKP): the firm said, "We think the company would make an attractive LBO/private equity candidate due to: Strong balance sheet with over $1B in net cash representing almost 20% of market cap; Relatively low valuation, CHKP trades at a P/E of ~16x CY07 EPS vs an average P/E of ~21x for our software coverage universe; Stable cash flow generation; CHKP has generated ~350M in operating cash flow each of the last two years and has a stable base of customers with high renewal rates."

Plantronics (NYSE: PLT): the firm said: "We think that Plantronics is a good candidate for a leveraged buy-out ... Our analysis suggests that a LBO would produce a 32% IRR for the equity sponsors and management even with a take-out premium of 25% versus the current stock price."

The firm also said despite scoring in the top 20 of their LBO scorecard, they have chosen not toinclude the following stocks as likely LBO candidates: National Semiconductor Corp. (NYSE: NSM), RF Micro Devices Inc. (Nasdaq: RFMD), Skyworks Solutions Inc. (Nasdaq: SWKS), QLogic Corp. (Nasdaq: QLGC), Western Digital Corp. (NYSE: WDC), Komag Inc. (Nasdaq: KOMG), Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT), Palm, Inc. (Nasdaq: PALM), Commscope Inc. (NYSE: CTV), Electronics for Imaging, Inc. (Nasdaq: EFII), Novellus Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: NVLS), Intersections Inc. (Nasdaq: INTX), Global Payments Inc. (NYSE: GPN), ECI Telecom Ltd. (Nasdaq: ECIL), Bisys Group Inc. (NYSE: BSG), Gateway Inc. (NYSE: GTW), Mattson Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: MTSN), LAM Research Corp. (Nasdaq: LRCX), McAfee Inc. (NYSE: MFE), Netflix, Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX).

The firm also said, "While we do not expect any of our 15 covered companies in the EMS, Connector,Distributor, and Passive segments to go private via an LBO or private equity, we do foresee Sanmina (Nasdaq: SANM) likely undergoing a significant recapitalization of it is capital structure."

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ABN AMRO (ABN) Higher After Children's Investment Fund Urges Break-Up or Sale

Shares of ABN AMRO Holding N.V. (NYSE: ABN) are 6% higher in pre-open action after London-based fund, The Children's Investment Fund, urged the company to actively pursue the potential break up, spin-off, sale or merger of its various businesses (or as a whole). The firm sees a "sum of the parts" value in excess of EUR 30 per share.

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Reports Getty Images (GYI) In Talks to Acquire Jupitermedia (JUPM)

According to reports from the New York Post, Getty Images (NYSE: GYI) is in advanced talks to acquire Jupitermedia Corp. (Nasdaq: JUPM) in a deal that could be worth more than $11 per share

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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Stifel Nicolaus Said Build-A-Bear (BBW0 Could Be A Takeover Tgt Below $30

Stifel Nicolaus defends Build-A-Bear Workshop Inc. (NYSE: BBW) following weak results and guidance. Analyst David Schick said, "Buy this stock. Yes, we know, comp is worsening against easing comparisons - that's not good. But we think either (a) improving momentum and tie-in learnings or (b) go private will be the outcomes from here."
Schick also said, "BBW makes good margin and great cash flow with retail/entertainment expertise. We believe the company could and should be private if it remains under $30, and better momentum should occur in 2Q07."

The firm maintains its Buy rating and $36 price target.

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Deutsche Bank Comments on Hanson plc (HAN) Following Vulcan/Florida Rock Deal

Deutsche Bank comments on Hanson plc (NYSE: HAN) following Vulcan (NYSE: VMC) / Florida Rock (NYSE: FRK) deal. The firm said, "The deal has very positive implications for Hanson. It is the last heavy building materials company with a 100% free float in Europe. It has been the subject of persistent bid speculation (see our previous bulletins). Following the Vulcan-Florida Rock deal, two possible targets are now removed from future speculation. The pending Cemex-Rinker deal could be endangered because Rinker shareholders may demand the same multiples as Florida Rock. This may force Cemex (NYSE: CX) to look elsewhere. Finally, Hanson may look to replicate the Vulcan deal with a merger of equals with another aggregates company.

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Bear Stearns (BSC) Higher on Takeover Chatter

Bear Stearns Companies Inc. (NYSE: BSC) is higher on resurfaced chatter the company could be the target of a takeover target. speculates JP Morgan's (NYSE: JPM) James Dimon could be targeting the company. Link

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Converium (CHR) Rejects Unsolicited Takeover Proposal

The Board of Directors of Converium (NYSE: CHR), who is being advised by Credit Suisse and JPMorgan, has carefully considered an unsolicited proposal by SCOR, over the weekend, to acquire Converium at CHF 21.- per share. The Directors are unanimous in their rejection of this proposal, which they believe fundamentally fails to recognise the value of Converium's franchise and growth prospects, and is, therefore, not in the interest of Converium, its shareholders, and its customers.

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Friday, February 16, 2007

GM In Talks To Purchase Chrysler Group - Report - DJ

GM (NYSE: GM) In Talks To Purchase Chrysler Group (NYSE: DCX) - Report - DJ

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Soleil Said Vonage (VG) Is An Underweight on the Business, But Overweight On Possible Takeover

Soleil Securities comments on Vonage (NYSE: VG) saying its Equalweight rating on the company is really an Underweight on the business with an Overweight on the potential for a takeout. Also said $3.23 of cash sets a near-term floor. Analyst Gregory H. Lundberg said, "VG trades at an EV/sub of $307, which is approaching a typical subscriber acquisition cost; acquiring VG may be cheaper and faster than building a VoIP business."

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Bear Stearns Thinks a SIRI/XMSR Merger Would Pass Regulatory Hurdles

Bear Stearns out with an interesting note, saying that they think both XM Satellite (NASDAQ: XMSR) and Sirius (NASDAQ: SIRI) believe a proposed merger could likely pass the regulatory hurdles, which they think would push them to attempt a merger.

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Rumors Goldman Sachs and British Airways Could Bid for AMR (AMR) - BusinessWeek

BusinessWeek's Inside Wall Street column discusses rumors AMR (NYSE: AMR), the parent of American Airlines, is a buyout target of a group that includes Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) and British Airways (NYSE: BAB) in a deal that could be worth $46-$52 per share.

NOTE: A follow-up report from Reuters said the two have no plans to bid for AMR, citing sources familiar with the matter.

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Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Dollar Thrifty Automotive (DTG) Soars on Takeover Reports

Shares of Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group Inc. (NYSE: DTG) are higher today on rumors reported in the New York Times, the company is in takeover discussions with Vanguard Car Rental, which owns National and Alamo, in a deal valued at more than $3 billion.
If the deal is completed it would create the third-largest rental car company in the US, behind Enterprise Rent-a-Car and Hertz Global Holdings (NYSE: HTZ).

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Occidental Petroleum (OXY) Sees Interest on Takeover Talk

Occidental Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: OXY) is about 2.5% higher on rumors the company could be the target of a takeover bid.

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Daimlerchrysler (DCX) Higher on Rumors of Chrysler Unit Fate

Shares of Daimlerchrysler AG (NYSE: DCX) are higher on rumors the company could sell or spin-off the Chrysler unit. The company said no options will be excluded in the Chrysler revamp.

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Retalix Ltd. (RTLX) Higher on Rumors VeriFone (PAY) Could Buy the Company

According to reports from Bloombeg, Israeli software maker Retalix Ltd. (Nasdaq: RTLX) was higher on speculation VeriFone (NYSE: PAY) is looking at acquiring the company. The stock rose as much as 9.5% in Tel Aviv on the rumors.

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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Ceridian (CEN) To Explore Strategic Alternatives

Ceridian Corporation (NYSE: CEN) announced that its Board of Directors has decided to explore a broad range of strategic alternatives to enhance shareholder value. The Board has retained Greenhill & Co., LLC as its financial advisor and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz as legal advisor to assist in this effort.

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Applebee's (APPB) Exploring Strategic Alternatives

Applebee's International, Inc. (Nasdaq: APPB) announced that its Board of Directors has formed a committee of independent directors to explore strategic alternatives for enhancing shareholder value, including a possible recapitalization or sale of the company.

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Alcoa (AA) Higher on Reports of Bids from BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP) and Rio Tinto PLC (RTP)

Share of Alcoa (NYSE: AA) are higher in pre-open trading on reports in Europe, BHP Billiton Ltd. (NYSE: BHP) and Rio Tinto PLC (NYSE: RTP) are each considering bids for the company worth around $40 billion.NOTE:

A follow-up report from Reuters said BHP Billiton was not working on a bid for Alcoa, citing a source close to the matter.

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Friday, February 09, 2007

Cubist Pharmaceuticals (CBST) Higher on Takeover Chatter

Cubist Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: CBST) is seeing interest in intra-day action on rumors the company could be a takeover target. Novartis AG (NYSE: NVS) has been mentioned as a possible suitor.
Shares of CBST are 4% higher.

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Thursday, February 08, 2007

No New York Times (NYT) Sale Says Analyst

According to reports from Bloomberg, a Lehman Brother analyst said a sale of the New York Times Co. (NYSE: NYT) to Warren Buffett or any other entity is highly unlikely due to the Sulzberger family control of the company.

Shares of New York Times closed up 3.8% Wednesday on rumors the billionaire was buying shares in the company. The stock is 2% lower today.

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Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Has Carl Icahn Sold His Take-Two (TTWO) Stake

In an article discussing the similarities of some investments of Carl Icahn and SAC Capital's Steven Cohen, The New York Post said they have learned that Icahn sold his entire 2.9 million share stake in Take-Two Interactive (Nasdaq: TTWO). The article also said Glenview Capital is rumored to have reduced its stake in TTWO. Link

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Novelis (NVL) Up on More Takeover Rumors

Novelis Inc. (NYSE: NVL) is moving higher again today on talk a takeover offer from Hindalco could be announced soon. Reports today suggest Hindalco could make a $6-$8 billion bid, higher than the $5-$6 billion price range originally discussed.

In Late January, Novelis confirmed it was in discussions with various parties that could lead to a potential sale of the Company.

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Friday, February 02, 2007

Nabors Industries (NBR) Higher on Renewed Takeover Rumors

Nabors Industries Ltd. (NYSE: NBR) has ramped higher on renewed takeover rumors. Spokesman declines to comment - Bloomberg.

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