Market Overview

Benzinga's M&A Chatter for Thursday October 17, 2013

The following are the M&A deals, rumors and chatter circulating on Wall Street for Thursday October 17, 2013:

Report Darden Hires Goldman to Advise on Activist Proposal

The Rumor:
According to USA Today, Darden Restaurants (NYSE: DRI) has hired Goldman Sachs to assist it in repsonding to a proposal from activist investor Barington Capital.

Among the suggestions in Barrington's proposal, was to form two independently managed restaurant operating companies; one which would include the Olive Garden and Red Lobster brands and one for its higher-growth brands, including LongHorn Steakhouse, The Capital Grille, Yard House, Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52 and Eddie V's Prime Seafood.

A spokesperson for Darden declined comment on the Goldman hire, but reiterated a statement made last week that "the Company has had dialogue with Barington Capital, and the Board will take the time necessary to thoroughly evaluate Barington's suggestions, just as the Company does for any of its shareholders."

Darden Restaurants closed Thursday at $51.80, a gain of more than 2%.

Report Lenovo Signs NDA to Review BlackBerry Books

The Rumor:
BlackBerry (NASDAQ: BBRY) shares spiked higher Thursday afternoon on a report from Dow Jones that Chinese computer maket Lenovo (OTC: LNVGY) had signed and NDA to review the Canadian handet maker's financial records. Lenovo executives have made statements in the past hinting of a possible interest in acquiring all of part of BlackBerry.

A spokesperson for Lenovo told Benzinga the company had not formally announced the signing of an NDA with BlackBerry. A BlackBerry spokesperson was not available for comment.

If the report is true, Lenovo would join Fairfax Capital and possibly Cerberus Capital Management as potential bidders for BlackBerry.

BlackBerry shares closed at $8.20 Thursday, a gain of $0.07.

Blackstone to Acquire Pactera for $7.30/ADS in Cash

The Deal:
Pactera Technology (NASDAQ: PACT) announced Thursday it has agreed to be acquired by a consortium led by funds managed or advised by Blackstone (NYSE: BX). Under the terms of the agreement, Pactera shareholders will receive $7.30 per common share or ADS.

Pactera closed at $7.07 Thursday, a gain of 8%.

Posted-In: News Rumors M&A Global

 

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