Friday, November 19, 2010

Google reportedly in talks to buy Groupon for $3 billion

Google is in talks with to buy Groupon for more than $3 billion, AllThingsD reports, citing “multiple sources close to the situation.” The story says Yahoo offered to buy the local deals site earlier this year for $2 billion to $3 billion. The piece also noted that the talks might not result in a deal.

The story noted that there could be other buyers, and cited Microsoft (MSFT),Amazon (AMZN) and eBay (EBAY) as potential alternative bidders.

Both Google and Groupon have declined to comment.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Caterpillar To Buy Mining-Equipment Company Bucyrus For $7.6B

PEORIA, Ill. and SOUTH MILWAUKEE, Wis. – Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT)
and Bucyrus International, Inc. (Nasdaq: BUCY) announced today they have entered into
an agreement under which Caterpillar will acquire Bucyrus International in a transaction
valued at approximately $8.6 billion (including net debt). The acquisition is based on
Caterpillar’s key strategic imperative to expand its leadership in the mining equipment
industry, and positions Caterpillar to capitalize on the robust long-term outlook for
commodities driven by the trend of rapid growth in emerging markets which are
improving infrastructure, rapidly developing urban areas and industrializing their
Under the terms of the transaction, which has been approved by the boards of
directors of both companies, Bucyrus shareholders will receive $92 per share, $7.6 billion
in aggregate consisting of all cash. The transaction represents an implied premium of 32
percent to Bucyrus' share price as of November 12, 2010. Caterpillar will fund the
acquisition through a combination of cash from the balance sheet, debt and up to $2
billion in equity. The transaction is expected to close in mid-2011. Caterpillar intends to
locate its mining business headquarters in South Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where Bucyrus
headquarters is currently located, and maintain the Bucyrus brand for the principal
Bucyrus legacy products.
“For several years, mining customers have been asking us to expand our range of
products and services to better serve their increasingly complex requirements,” said
Caterpillar Chairman and CEO Doug Oberhelman. “This announcement says to those
customers, we heard you loud and clear. It is a strong statement about our belief in the
bright future of the mining industry. Our strategy calls for disciplined investment in
attractive industries that value our product and service delivery model," Oberhelman said.
"Our performance through the global economic turmoil of 2008-2009 allowed us to
emerge with a strong balance sheet and the ability to make strategic investments in
companies like Bucyrus. This, and other recent acquisitions, will position Caterpillar for
industry leadership and will be positive for our stockholders, customers and employees.”
Tim Sullivan, Bucyrus President and CEO, said, “This is an outstanding and
financially compelling transaction for our shareholders. More fundamentally, it is a
testament to the tremendous value our talented team of employees has created over the
past several years and to the strength of our brand in the global mining machinery
marketplace. I am confident that we have found an excellent partner in Caterpillar.
Caterpillar is a first-rate global company and it shares our commitment to providing
innovative products and exceptional service to customers, creating a collaborative and
safe work environment for employees and minimizing the impact on the environment.
We are very pleased that Caterpillar has committed to locate its mining business
headquarters in Milwaukee and we are confident that the combined global platform will
be extremely well positioned to capitalize on the substantial growth opportunities in this
market in the years ahead.”
The closing of the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals, customary
closing conditions and approval by Bucyrus stockholders. At that time, Caterpillar Group
President Steve Wunning will have executive office accountability for Bucyrus, along
with his current responsibilities for the company’s mining business.
“Even today at mine sites around the world, our customers are using Bucyrus
shovels to load Caterpillar mining trucks,” Wunning said. “This combination, as well as
the significant expansion in products and facility capacity already announced, gives us
the opportunity to expand the range of surface and underground mining products and
solutions offered to customers by Caterpillar and its dealer network.”
A driving motivation for the transaction is Caterpillar’s estimate of more than
$400 million in annual synergies beginning in 2015 derived from the combined financial
strength and complementary product offerings of the combined mining equipment
Synergies driven by the acquisition include:
• Market leading sales and support capabilities of Caterpillar dealers and a
broad, one-stop shop for global mining customers
• Caterpillar Remanufacturing products and services for Bucyrus equipment
• Caterpillar engines and components to enhance performance and lower owning
and operating costs for Bucyrus equipment
• Additional scale and cost efficiencies in areas such as purchasing and engineering
• Deployment of manufacturing best practices through the Caterpillar Production
J.P. Morgan Securities LLC served as exclusive financial advisor for Caterpillar
and has provided committed financing for the transaction. Mayer Brown LLP, Sidley
Austin LLP and Howrey LLP served as legal advisors for Caterpillar.
Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. and UBS Investment Bank served as financial
advisors for Bucyrus. Sullivan & Cromwell LLP and Arnold & Porter LLP served as
legal advisors for Bucyrus.

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Daily Beast acquires Newsweek

The Daily Beast agreed to acquire Newsweek, Inc. on November 11, 2010. The Daily Beast and Newsweek will merge to form The Newsweek Daily Beast Company which will be equally owned by Sidney Harmon and IAC/InterActiveCorp. Under the new structure, Newsweek will remain a printed weekly magazine, but its web operations will be incorporated into the Daily Beast's website. Tina Brown will become editor-in-chief of the newly merged operation of both publications. Harman will be executive chairman of the new venture while Daily Beast President Stephen Colvin will be Chief Executive Officer. The management will report to an independent board with IAC chairman Barry Diller serving as a Board Member.

EMC acquires Bus-Tech

EMC® Corporation (NYSE: EMC), the world’s leading provider of information infrastructure solutions, today announced it has acquired Bedford, Massachusetts-based Bus-Tech®, Inc. Bus-Tech is a privately held provider of VTL (Virtual Tape Library) solutions that utilize open systems disk storage to store and retrieve mainframe tape data. Bus-Tech products enhance EMC solutions for mainframe batch processing, backup and recovery, disaster recovery, and data archiving applications. Bus-Tech now becomes part of the rapidly growing EMC Backup Recovery Systems division, which delivers next-generation, disk-based backup and recovery solutions. The acquisition is not expected to have a material impact to EMC GAAP and non-GAAP EPS for the full 2010 fiscal year.

The opportunity for mainframe users to eliminate tape infrastructure and embrace next-generation disk-based backup solutions is being driven by mainframe virtual tape and data deduplication technologies. Bus-Tech and EMC are technology and market leaders in these respective categories. IDC estimates mainframe tape storage and media revenues will be $2.5 billion between 2010 and 2014, creating a significant market opportunity for disk-based storage in mainframe tape environments. The combination of EMC disk library and EMC deduplication storage systems with Bus-Tech mainframe virtual tape library controllers gives mainframe users a simple, cost-effective way to eliminate complex and aging tape-based systems. This accelerates their batch, backup and disaster recovery processes while providing automation and reliability levels that tape-based systems simply cannot deliver.

Frank Slootman, President of EMC’s Backup Recovery Systems division, said, “Mainframe users are not immune to the challenges with tape when it comes to backup and recovery. In a few short years, the application of data deduplication and disk-based storage has literally transformed the backup market. The addition of Bus-Tech will enable us to deliver a suite of next-generation mainframe backup products that are highly differentiated in terms of performance, integration and supportability.”

Bus-Tech has been a member of the EMC Select partner program since 2004, and has been an EMC OEM partner since March of 2008. Bus-Tech most recently collaborated with EMC in July of 2010 to help deliver the Deduplication Storage Expansion option for the EMC DLm960 Disk Library for Mainframe, which was based on the widely adopted EMC Data Domain® DD880 deduplication storage system. The pairing of Bus-Tech mainframe

Al Brandt, President of Bus-Tech, said, “This acquisition begins a new and very exciting chapter for Bus-Tech and its employees. EMC’s Backup Recovery Systems division has sustained a market trajectory to which we will soon be contributing. Bus-Tech’s solutions span the full range of mainframe customer types, so the potential associated with this combination is significant. We are looking forward to a very productive future as members of the EMC family.”

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Oracle Buys ATG

Oracle announced today that it has agreed to acquire Art Technology Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARTG), a leading provider of eCommerce software and related on demand commerce optimization applications, through a cash merger for $6.00 per share, or approximately $1.0 billion. ATG’s solutions enable enterprises to provide a cohesive online customer experience with sophisticated merchandising, marketing, content personalization, automated recommendations, and live-help services.

ATG’s eCommerce software platform is the industry’s top-ranked, cross-channel commerce solution and is highly complementary to Oracle’s CRM, ERP, Retail, and Supply Chain applications, as well as its portfolio of middleware and business intelligence technologies. ATG also offers on demand commerce optimization applications that provide companies with an online presence, the ability to improve customer satisfaction through immediate service response and automated recommendations.

Together Oracle and ATG expect to help businesses grow revenue, strengthen customer loyalty, improve brand value, achieve better operating results, and increase business agility across online and traditional commerce environments.

The transaction is subject to stockholder and regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions and is expected to close by early 2011.

“Driven by the convergence of online and traditional commerce and the need to increase revenue and improve customer loyalty, organizations across many industries are looking for a unified commerce and CRM platform to provide a seamless experience across all commerce channels,” said Thomas Kurian, Executive Vice President Oracle Development. “Bringing together the complementary technologies and products from Oracle and ATG will enable the delivery of next-generation, unified cross-channel commerce and CRM.”

“More than 1,000 global enterprises rely on ATG’s solutions to help increase the value of their online customer interactions,” said Bob Burke, President and CEO, ATG. “This combination will enhance the ability to bring all their commerce activities together – creating a more consistent and relevant experience for their customers across all interaction channels, including online, in stores, via mobile devices and with call centers.”

“The addition of ATG, which brings market-leading products used by some of the largest and most well-known retailers and brands, furthers Oracle’s strategy of delivering industry-specific enterprise applications,” said Bob Weiler, Executive Vice President, Oracle Global Business Units. “This acquisition builds upon our dedication to offer the most complete and integrated suite of best-of-breed software applications and technologies required to power the most demanding companies in the world in every industry.”

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

WPP plc acquires behavioral targeting firm I-Behavior

WPP plc, together with its subsidiaries, offers various communications services worldwide. It provides global, national, and specialist advertising services; above- and below-the-line media planning, buying, and specialist sponsorship and branded entertainment services; and specializes in brand, consumer, media, and marketplace insight, as well as works with clients to generate and apply insights. The company also offers corporate, consumer, financial, and brand-building services; consumer, corporate, and employee branding and design services, covering identity, packaging, literature, events, training, and architecture; a range of general and specialist customer, channel, direct, field, retail, promotional, and point-of-sale services; and integrated healthcare marketing solutions, including advertising, medical education, and online marketing. In addition, WPP provides a range of specialist services comprising custom media and multicultural marketing, event, sports, youth, and entertainment marketing; corporate and business-to-business; and media, technology, and production services. Further, the company offers a CPM-based media network representing inventory from over 950 publishers; a publisher-side advertising management platform; online marketing and measurement, search solutions, and email marketing; digital production; an interactive agency; addressable advertising system for cable and satellite operators; social media; Web analytics tools for publishers; an Internet-based advertising agency; an online video game network; and an integrated Web marketing suite. Additionally, it develops technology products that enhance the process of acquiring, optimizing, and measuring digital media; and creates turnkey mobile solutions for handset manufacturers and wireless operators, as well as mobile branding, promotion, and marketing solutions. WPP was founded in 1971 and is based in Dublin, Ireland.

I-Behavior, Inc., a behavioral targeting company, provides database marketing solutions for multi-channel marketers and advertisers. The company delivers the modeling performance, price, and bottom-line results. It offers products and services for acquisition, retention, and optimization. I-Behavior focuses on direct targeting, online targeting, and retail based on buying behavior across industry verticals, including catalog, retail, continuity, and solo offers. The company is based in Louisville, Colorado.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.