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. Betaville can also be reached at Whats App, Signal or Telegram. Betaville's Twitter handle is @bharringtonw11 and you can message me via Twitter with stories.

How News Corp, Fitch and Moody's can save themselves £1 billion...

Thursday, 14 March 2019, 11:39 am

I was intrigued to read in yesterday's venerable Financial Times that the likes of News Corp, Fitch, Moody's and S&P Global are queing up to pay £1 billion of the owner of Mergermarket, one of Betaville's first employers. Below is a link to the FT piece:

https://www.ft.com/content/5a79d412-444d-11e9-a965-23d669740bfb..

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Grump...

Friday, 8 March 2019, 7:06 pm

Betaville is in a bad mood.

Readers might be wondering why. Well, after stumbling across a fun little scoopette over a sumptuous lunch this week Betaville got cracking with the proper journalistic protocol of calling the relevant parties this morning to provide the customary "opportunity to comment"...

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Brexit...who cares, say French Canadians

Thursday, 7 March 2019, 6:52 pm

Betaville has encountered plenty of bankers recently moaning about the lack dealmaking activity in the UK because of the "uncertainty" caused by the looming March 29 Brexit day.

But there was one deal where Brexit didn't even register as a risk factor: Saputo's £1 billion takeover of British cheesemaker Dairy Crest.

Why?..

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Top City banker emerges as The Independent Group fundraiser, Guido Fawkes reports

Wednesday, 6 March 2019, 11:13 am

Hat tip to political blog Guido Fawkes for landing the story about Russell Chambers emerging as a key funder to The Independent Group, the new centrist political party foreshadowed on Betaville. Below is a link to the piece on Guido Fawkes:

https://order-order.com/2019/03/05/tony-blairs-favourite-banker-fundraising-tig/..

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Mocado -Part 3

Tuesday, 5 March 2019, 7:30 pm

I see Betaville's friends over at the Evening Standard's business section have followed up this NM Rothschild conflict of interest line and landed up a rather juicy scoop in the process.

Indeed, Russ Lynch dug out the fact that Rothschild banker Nigel Higgins, the soon-to-be chairman of scandal hit Barclays, was in fact working for John Lewis/Waitrose on an almost identical deal just a few months ago...

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Mocado -Part 2

Monday, 4 March 2019, 7:49 pm

Impressive: the chaps at NM Rothschild have turned up as lead financial adviser to Marks & Spencer on its JV deal with Ocado.

So, the venerable merchant is now lead adviser to three of the largest food retailers in the UK - Asda/Wal-Mart, Wm Morrison and now Marks & Spencer (from memory previously Citigroup/Schroders led the charge for M&S)...

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Losing a hostile bid is winning, apparently...-Part 2

Saturday, 2 March 2019, 2:50 pm

Betaville thought it only right that I follow up this week's piece with a snippet noting that it was, in fact, The Sunday Times Prufrock diarist Liam Kelly who first picked up on FTI Consulting's attempt to win an award for its "defence" of GKN, the FTSE 100-listed aerospace giant bought by Melrose.

So, many grovelling apologies for missing that Mr Kelly!

And below is a link to the young scamp's original Prufrock column:..

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Mnuchin in Mayfair!

Friday, 1 March 2019, 6:34 pm

Spotted: Steve Mnuchin, the 77th and current United States Secretary of the Treasury.

Betaville had been loafing around Mayfair (a smart area of London that tends to attract bankers, hedgies and men in dark glasses) looking for jackanories when lo and behold Steve Mnuchin, the Donald Trump sidekick with the unpronounceable surname, appears out of nowhere...

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Losing an £8 billion hostile bid is winning, apparently...

Thursday, 28 February 2019, 10:05 pm

Betaville chuckled at the titbit in Dom Walsh's business diary column in The Times today about how FTI Consulting entered the PRCA City and Financial Awards for “best M&A or communication in support of a transaction award” for its work defending GKN from last year’s £8 billion hostile takeover by Melrose Industries. Below is a link if you missed it:..

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Mocado...

Tuesday, 26 February 2019, 7:24 pm

Mocado, Markado and Ocamark. These are just some of the monikers being used to describe the latest Marks & Spencer / Ocado joint venture tie-up.

Anyway, hat tip to the Evening Standard's Russell Lynch for smoking out the latest iteration of the deal with his scoop today in the paper about the impending transaction. Below is a link to Russell Lynch's piece in case you missed it:..

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A Wirecard observation - Part 3

Monday, 25 February 2019, 10:17 pm

Charming Crispin was gracious enough to talk to little old Betaville last week about the Wirecard shenanigans despite the ribbing over the past few years.

So, in you case missed it over the weekend I have pasted a link to the mini interview with Crispin - last year's pest performing hedge fund manager, according to HSBC - in yesterday's Mail on Sunday's excellent business section...

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Tags: Wirecard

The £12 billion supermarket merger, the advisor and the rival...

Thursday, 21 February 2019, 9:59 pm

I see former The Sunday Times colleague, Simon Duke, is being rather mean to NM Rothschild banker Majid Ishaq in today's business diary in The Times.

Dukey gently mocks Ishaq, the man in charge of advising Asda on its merger with J Sainsbury, for a potential loss of a multi-million pound success fee after it became clear the CMA is likely to block the mega deal. Below is a link to Simon's piece:..

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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].