A cheeky website about deals, dealmakers and anything else I find interesting. Edited by Ben Harrington. If you have a tip or want to discuss a story please feel free to email Betaville at ben@betaville.co.uk.

M&A hack walks into the sunset...or more like the other side of the world

Wednesday, 13 December 2017, 8:05 pm

So farewell Dan Dunkley, The Sunday Times deals reporter who Betaville has had the pleasure of working with at several different publications.

Some of Dan's memorable M&A scoops include revealing: the detail of Mediclinic's bid £1.3 billion bid for Spire Healthcare; Aveva's merger Schneider Electric; and unveiling Li Ka Shing's attempt to buy O2 from Telefonica for £9 billion.

I have pasted the links to Dan's scoops below:..

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Former Bell Pottinger boss said to be "back in business"...

Friday, 8 December 2017, 8:32 am

Remember James Henderson?

He was the chief executive of Bell Pottinger until the firm imploded over its work for the Gupta family in South Africa. And the firm's implosion dominated mainstream media organisations thanks to Lord Bell's car crash interview on BBC's Newsnight and Henderson's high-profile connections, including his glamorous girlfriend Heather Kerzner, the South African born socialite...

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Negotiating the value of equity research for the post Mifid II regime - part 2

Wednesday, 6 December 2017, 4:50 pm

Poor old Michael Burt. Rival media organisations were being rather mean to him today after Exane BNP Paribas analyst published an "underperform" research note at 6:00am on Intu Properties, which suggested a takeover is highly unlikely. An hour later Hammerson announces the £3.4 billion purchase of Intu. Betaville, though, knows how difficult it is to land accurate M&A stories, so will refrain from making fun of Burt...

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RARE ALERT: Cabot Energy said to be working multi-million pound placing

Tuesday, 5 December 2017, 12:17 pm

Aim-listed oil and gas company Cabot Energy is working on a a multi-million pound equity fundraising.

According to sources claiming to be familiar with the matter, Cabot Energy is looking to raise up to £15 million via a placing.

However, it's not clear what price the new shares will be issued at. Sources also said it's unclear what the fresh capital is for.

Cabot Energy's main asset is an onshore light oil production project in Canada, according to its website...

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The activist, the Evening Standard columnist and the top of the market...

Friday, 1 December 2017, 6:41 pm

It's been ten years since Sir Christopher Hohn (then just Chris Hohn) launched a viscious activist campaign against ABN Amro by calling for the dismissal of its chief executive and a sale of the business. That move ultimately led to takeover approaches from Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland. And we all know what happened next.....

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RARE ALERT: Reach 4 Entertainment said to be working on multi-million pound equity fundraising

Wednesday, 29 November 2017, 12:27 pm

Aim-listed Reach 4 Entertainment is said to be looking to raise up to £5 million of fresh equity from investors.

Reach 4 Entertainment - which specialises in entertainment and brand building for theatrical, film and live entertainment - and its advisers are working on an equity placing and deal could be announced imminently.

However, it's not clear what price new shares will be issued at but some sources said it could be at a discount to the current share price...

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Betaville Intelligence

RARE ALERT: Revolution Bars Group said to ... part 2

Tuesday, 28 November 2017, 10:41 am

Nightclub operator Deltic is laying the groundwork for fresh merger proposal with Revolution Bars Group by secretly buying a stake of around 3pc in the bar company.

According to sources claiming to be familiar with the matter, Deltic has been buying shares in Revolution since the beginning of this week and could announce the purchase of a 3pc stake prior to the Annual General Meeting...

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Is the tide turning for Odey the Brexiteer? - part 27

Friday, 24 November 2017, 9:22 am

Hacks at trade rag Financial News dug up a rare piece of good news from Odey Asset Management, the hedge fund firm run by charming Brexiteer Crispin Odey.

The Odey Absolute Return Fund - which is managed by a chap called James Hanbury - is actually doing rather well. According to the FN report, Hanbury's fund is up 11.2pc this year. Below is a link to the FN piece if you want to read all the detail:..

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Chinese circle Fingerprint Cards - the series returns...

Thursday, 23 November 2017, 11:14 am

It's good to see the Nordic press finally follow up on Betaville's scoops about Beijing Watertek weighing a bid for Fingerprint Cards.

As usual, Betaville took a fair amount of stick after this website revealed last year that China's Beijing Watertek was preparing a takeover bid for Sweden's Fingerprint Cards, which specialises in biometrics. Here is a link to the original piece:..

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Another day, another confirmation... - part 2

Thursday, 23 November 2017, 9:40 am

Embattled Aim-listed "internet of things" company Telit Communications has finally confirmed it has appointed Richard Kilsby, the former boss of 888, as non-executive chairman. Below is a link to the release:

The news comes after Betaville and The Sunday Times revealed the likely appointment of Kilsby just over a couple of weeks ago. Here are the links to those pieces:..

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Flag pole alert - the series is back

Tuesday, 21 November 2017, 9:41 am

Shares in Imperial Brands are enjoying a little bounce today. The stock is up around 3pc because Japan Tobacco's new chief executive, Mitsuomi Koizumi, has said:

"If there is a good M&A opportunity, company will pursue regardless of size."

So, naturally speculators are putting 2 and 2 together and coming up with...well, I have pasted a note below from Exane BNP Paribas so you can see what the broker thinks...

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[Disclaimer - the information on Betaville does not consitute any form of investment recommendation and is not intended to be relied upon by readers in making, or refraining from, any investment decisions].