Market Overview

Benzinga's M&A Chatter for Thursday April 12, 2012


The following are the M&A deals, rumors and chatter circulating on Wall Street for Thursday April 12, 2012:

Roche Issues Statement Regarding Illumina Offer

The Rumor:
Roche (RHHBY) released the following statement regarding its pending offer for Illumina (NASDAQ: ILMN):

“We continue to believe that on the basis of the public information that has been available to us, our offer price of $51 per share is full, fair and extremely attractive by every conceivable financial metric. Illumina has to date not provided any quantitative support for their aggressive growth assumptions. We believe that their long term growth expectations are unrealistic and ignore the inherent and significant market and technology risks,” said Severin Schwan, CEO of Roche Group.

Schwan continued, “As we have said earlier, if Illumina were to engage with us, we would consider any information supporting Illumina's contention that our offer undervalues the company and its prospects. However, because Illumina has refused to enter into negotiations with us, our current analysis is by necessity based solely on publicly available information, and that information does not justify a price in excess of $51 per share. Our goal has always been to enter into a negotiated transaction with Illumina and we firmly believe that our present offer is more than adequate to serve as a basis to begin that negotiation with Illumina.”

Last week a rumor surfaced that Roche would raise its offer to $57.50 per share

Illumina closed at 49.51 Thursday, a loss of 5.82% on 3 times the average daily volume.

Hearing Chatter of Berkshire Hathaway Investment in AIG

The Rumor:
Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.B) to acquire the US Treasury stake in AIG (NYSE: AIG), according to sources. That stake is reported at $15 billion to $18 billion.

Spokespersons for Berkshire Hathaway and AIG were not available for comment.

AIG closed at 33.23 Thursday, a gain of 4.27% on twice the average daily volume.

Hearing Safeway Puts Itself Up For Sale

The Rumor:
Safeway (NYSE: SWY) has put itself up for sale according to Reuters sources.

A spokesperson for Safeway would not comment on the rumor, but did say its been over a year since that rumor last surfaced.

Safeway closed at $20.67 Thursday, a gain of 2.38% on 9 times the average daily volume.

Hearing MIPS Hires Goldman Sachs as Adviser

The Rumor:
MIPS Technologies (NASDAQ: MIPS) has hired Goldman Sachs as an adviser to possibly seek a sale of the company, according to sources. MIPS was last mentioned as a takeover target in July 2011.

Benzinga spoke Thursday with a representative of MIPS, but she would not comment on the rumor.

MIPS Technologies closed at $6.58 Thursday, a gain of 26.30% on 9.5 times the average daily volume.

Hearing Argentina Could Buy 50.01% of YPF

The Rumor:
Argentina could acquire 50.01% of YPF (NYSE: YPF), according to sources. YPF shares have been under pressure the past 2 weeks amid reports the government was looking to nationalize the company.

A spokesperson for YPF told Benzinga today he had "no idea" of the rumor.

YPF closed at $22.93 Thursday, a gain of 8.62% on more than twice the average daily volume.

Hearing Best Buy Gets Private Equity Offer

The Rumor:
Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) has received an offer from a private equity firm, according to sources. The offer is rumored to be $32.50 per share.

A Best Buy spokesperson would not comment on the rumored offer.

Best Buy closed at $22.24 Thursday, a gain of 1.28% on 3 times the average daily volume.

UBS Likes an AstraZeneca Takeover of Mylan

The Rumor:
AstraZeneca (NYSE: AZN) should by Mylan (NYSE: MYL), according to a note from a UBS analyst.

An AstraZeneca spokesperson would not comment on the UBS note. A Mylan spokesperson could not be reached for comment.

Mylan closed at $22.39 Thursday, a gain of 2.21% on slightly more than average volume.

Hearing Tower Group and Enstar to Remain in the Bidding for Flagstone

The Rumor:
Tower Group (NASDAQ: TWGP) and Enstar (NASDAQ: ESGR) are reported to be continuing talks to acquirer Flagstone Reinsurance Holdings (NYSE: FSR), according to dealReporter.

Spokespersons for the rumored parties were not available for comment.

Flagstone Reinsurance Holdings closed at $7.49 Thursday, a gain of 1.35% on 3 times the average daily volume.

Posted-In: Long Ideas M&A News Short Ideas Rumors Global After-Hours Center Movers


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