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.


Wednesday, 16 September 2015, 12:05 am

SAB Miller shares are sharply up this afternoon - almost 4pc at pixel time.

Some readers might be wondering why.

Well, from what I can tell tongues are wagging in the Square Mile amid rumours Altria - the US tobacco company that owns 26pc stake in SAB Miller, according to Bloomberg data - has just pulled out of a Bank of America Merrill Lynch conference. ..


ECI pulls sale of Reed & Mackay; focus on growing US business

Monday, 14 September 2015, 7:41 pm

It would appear the sale of Reed & Mackay, the corporate travel agent favoured by some of the City's most prestigious firms, has been called off.

I'm hearing from good sources ECI Partners, the private equity firm that owns Reed & Mackay, has pulled the auction after appointing bankers from NM Rothschild to run a sale process to raise £100 million.

Here are links to some of previous Betaville posts on the topic:..


PSP Investments and CPP said to be interested in London City Airport

Thursday, 10 September 2015, 5:48 pm

London City Airport has already generated a fair degree of interest since it first emerged its owner Global Infrastructure Partners had put it up for sale for £2 billion a couple of months ago.

Indeed, it would appear three consortia have already emerged as likely bidders for the airport at the end of the Docklands Light Railway. Those consortia are:

1. A consortium comprising Canadian pension fund Borealis and Allianz, the German insurer...


Top of the market? - part 1

Thursday, 10 September 2015, 3:49 am

Enough is enough - it's time to start a "top of the market" series.

Why? Because there was another clear sign today (in my humble opinion) that UK is in the midst of a raging bull market, which normally means the economy is peaking (give or take eighteen months).

This afternoon US private equity giant KKR bought a 25pc stake in Marshall Wace, the hedge fund founded by Paul Marshall and Ian Wace. ..


Nikkei/FT land Amlin takeover scoop

Tuesday, 8 September 2015, 3:48 am

It looks like the Nikkei's purchase of the Financial Times is working out well for both news outfits when it comes to landing M&A scoops.

The Japanese paper has just broken the story that FTSE 250-listed Lloyd's of London insurer Amlin is about to get taken over by Mitsui Sumitomo, and as a result the Pink' un is the the first to report the news over here in Blighty.

In case you missed it, here is the link:..


Alex back and in fine fettle

Tuesday, 1 September 2015, 8:58 pm

Great to see The Daily Telegraph's Alex Masterley cartoon back from holiday and on cracking form - today's piece really did make me chuckle. Here is a link to his brilliant cartoon:..



Tuesday, 1 September 2015, 6:11 pm

I can't claim to have been following the Bwin bid battle between 888 and GVC in too much detail since it began in earnest a few months ago.

But today it would appear the Bwin board is sticking by its recommendation of 888's offer despite having received a higher takeover proposal from GVC.

As a result, quite a few investors are scratching their heads, wondering why Bwin's board is sticking by its recommendation. Food for thought.....


Shire's next deal could be "transformational" - part 4

Wednesday, 26 August 2015, 11:44 pm

This latest global stockmarket rout seems to have had little impact on the booming M&A market, with Betfair announcing a £5 billion merger with Paddy Power this morning and Schlumberger striking a deal to purchase Cameron International in the US for $14.8 billion...


Zurich smoked out - part 2

Wednesday, 26 August 2015, 12:54 am

Bryce Elder's comments about Zurich's takeover of RSA aired on FT Alphaville's markets live this morning made me chuckle - he really is a witty writer (well, much more amusing than me, at least). ..


[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].