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   Strategies & Market TrendsSpeculating in Takeover Targets

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From: richardred6/4/2015 9:04:38 AM
   of 6788
Had BRLI on the watch list , but never bought in. A 15 point move premarket. I've always had good fortune of my lab stocks being acquired. Metpath, Damon, Biomedical Reference Labs,. Blood testing is needed for many treatments and monitoring of those treatments today.

Opko Health agrees to buy Bio-Reference Labs in $1.5 billion deal

in a deal valued at about $1.5 billion. Opko said it will pay 2.75 shares for each Bio-Reference Labs share, which is equal to $52.58 per share. The deal is expected to close in the second half. Opko said it will leverage the marketing, sales and distribution resources of Bio-Reference Labs to push sales of 4Kscore, a blood test that provides details of a patient's risk of contracting aggressive prostate cancer, along with other diagnostic products. J.P. Morgan was financial advisor to Opko, while Allen & Company LLC was financial advisor to Bio-Reference Labs. Opko shares fell 3.2% in premarket trade, while Bio-Reference Labs was halted.

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From: Glenn Petersen6/4/2015 9:44:11 AM
   of 6788
Dish Network in Merger Talks With T-Mobile US

Dish and T-Mobile have agreed Charlie Ergen would be chairman and John Legere CEO, sources say

By Ryan Knutson, Thomas Gryta andShalini Ramachandran
The Wall Street Journal
Updated June 4, 2015 12:09 a.m. ET

Dish Network Corp. DISH -1.24 % is in talks to merge with T-Mobile US Inc., TMUS -0.80 % people familiar with the matter said, a deal that would accelerate a wave of consolidation across the U.S. media and communications industries.

The two sides are in close agreement about what the combined company would look like, with Dish Chief Executive Charlie Ergen becoming the company’s chairman and his T-Mobile counterpart, John Legere, serving as the combined company’s CEO, the people said.

Tougher questions about a purchase price and the mix of cash and stock that would be used to pay for a deal remain unresolved, the people said. One of the people characterized the talks as at “the formative stage,” and said an agreement might not ultimately be hammered out.

If completed, the deal would be the latest multibillion-dollar combination in traditional television and communications industries being upended by the Internet. T-Mobile rival AT&T Inc. T 1.95 % is close to wrapping up its $49 billion deal for Dish rival DirecTV DTV 1.29 % that will create the country’s largest pay-TV company. Meanwhile, Charter Communications Inc. CHTR -2.88 % recently announced a total of $67 billion in deals that would roll up Time Warner Cable TWC -0.92 % and Bright House Networks to create the second-largest U.S. cable operator.

A deal would likely be very large. T-Mobile has a market capitalization of about $31 billion, a little below Dish’s $33 billion.

A Dish deal with T-Mobile would combine the country’s second-largest satellite TV operator with its fourth-largest wireless carrier. It would also address major strategic issues for both sides.

Dish lacks the robust broadband Internet service that cable companies can lean on to offset a declining TV business. It also has amassed billions of dollars of wireless licenses but hasn’t built the cellular network needed to put them to use. T-Mobile’s wireless service would help address both needs.

T-Mobile, meanwhile, has added subscribers at an industry-leading rate over the past several quarters, but still is dwarfed by much bigger rivals AT&T and Verizon Communications Inc. VZ -0.12 % Dish’s wireless licenses would give T-Mobile a path to boosting the capacity of its network.

T-Mobile has about 44.7 million retail customers, which includes mainstream and prepaid customers. Dish has 13.8 million satellite TV customers and 591,000 Internet subscribers.

Deutsche Telekom DTEGY 1.74 % owns 66% of T-Mobile and has for several years been looking to either sell the company or merge it with another.

One significant uncertainty is Mr. Ergen, who has held talks with companies across the wireless and satellite industries in recent years without completing a major deal. Dish bid openly—and unsuccessfully—for wireless carriers Sprint Corp. S 1.28 % and Clearwire Corp. two years ago and has earned a reputation as a deal maker who is tough to get to closing.

A Dish deal with T-Mobile would combine the country’s second-largest satellite TV operator with its fourth-largest wireless carrier. Photo: Matthew Staver/Bloomberg New

Still, Dish has consistently expressed interest in entering the wireless industry. It has been amassing licenses to use wireless airwaves for several years. Earlier this year, it worked with two smaller firms to bid $13.3 billion in a government auction of wireless airwaves, second only to AT&T’s $18.2 billion.

T-Mobile has transformed itself from the weakling of the wireless industry into its fastest-growing carrier. Under Mr. Legere, T-Mobile acquired regional rival MetroPCS in 2013, made strides in improving the quality of T-Mobile’s network, and was the first carrier to do away with two-year contracts. It also began paying subscribers to switch carriers and soon began adding customers at a rapid clip. In the first three months of the year, it was the only major U.S. carrier to add phone customers, and T-Mobile is now on track to pass rival Sprint and become the country’s third-largest wireless carrier by subscribers.

T-Mobile spent much of last year in talks to be acquired by Sprint. Those talks fell apart after federal regulators—insistent on preserving four national wireless carriers—repeatedly signaled they would block a deal.

That opened the door for Mr. Ergen. In May, Mr. Ergen said, “We admire what John and his team have done at T-Mobile,” referring to Mr. Legere, the CEO, “and certainly we follow what they do.”

A T-Mobile deal with Dish could face far less opposition from regulators, because the companies are in different industries and because a deal could in theory create a stronger wireless competitor. AT&T’s similar combination with DirecTV is expected to be approved. Regulators would look to see if the combined companies might need to shed some spectrum, however.

On Tuesday, Mr. Ergen uncharacteristically agreed to sit down with analysts and investors for a meeting in the Denver area near Dish’s headquarters. While much was expected of the meeting, analysts and investors said they came away with little additional insight about Dish’s wireless plans. “Some attendees were clearly disappointed that there were no announcements,” J.P. Morgan JPM 1.03 % analyst Phil Cusick said in a research note Wednesday.

Mr. Ergen reiterated in the meeting that Dish has four options for its wireless strategy: join with another company to offer wireless service, sell Dish’s spectrum or the whole company, acquire another company with a network, or wholesale the spectrum. Analysts said Dish made clear it has no plans to build a wireless network from scratch.

Mr. Cusick said Dish’s view is that “spectrum values should increase as bandwidth shortages crop up, so Dish has no urgency to act, but again is open to the right near-term deal if it comes along.”

Corrections & Amplifications:
T-Mobile has about 44.7 million retail customers. Also, Charter Communications recently announced a total of $67 billion in deals that would roll up Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks to create the second-largest cable operator. An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that T-Mobile has 39 million retail customers and that Charter recently announced a total of $66 billion in deals. (June 3)

Write to Ryan Knutson at, Thomas Gryta at and Shalini Ramachandran at

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To: richardred who wrote (3952)6/6/2015 9:38:06 AM
From: richardred
   of 6788
RE-OMG The risk arbs are in. The stock now is now trading slightly above the offer. With the stock in PLAY AND A formal deal on the table. I'm holding on to my shares for a higher bid or WHITE KNIGHT.

A look at the OM Group sale featuring SpringOwl OM Group is getting taken out by Apollo Group and Platform Specialty Products - with shares up 30% over the last week, not all shareholders are happy. It seems the activist here, FrontFour Capital, is getting a raw deal as well. They went active in January and are getting taken out at a roughly 15% premium from the day it went active. FrontFour wanted cost cuts and buybacks - suggesting the fair value could be $60 a share, versus the current $34 buyout. But SpringOwl has come out against the deal, which comes comes as its cohort Cove Street Capital has come out today vilifying the deal.

Now, SpringOwl's issues include the fact that it believes OM Group is very close to getting past its operational issues, including:

(i) a value-destructive M&A binge at a cost of approximately $1.5 billion, (ii) woeful historical ROIC and ROE measures versus the Company's Proxy Peer Group over one, three and five-year periods, (iii) lackluster EBITDA margins as compared to the Company's Proxy Peer Group, and (iv) a seemingly bloated SG&A structure.

SpringOwl takes issue with the fact that management did not and has not looked for other buyers. The all-cash deal also means that shareholders won't get to participate in the turnaround of OM Group in the future. Of note - the buyout was signed before FrontFour Capital's two board nominees were announced. On the board right now is a former Apollo partner.

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To: richardred who wrote (3145)6/6/2015 10:09:01 AM
From: richardred
   of 6788
RE-ULBI The company is now moderately profitable and continues to shrink the shares outstanding. I've been holding since Michael Popielec came over from Carlisle corp in 2010. With insiders owning a big percentage, no debt, and 20 million in cash. In due time. I wouldn't be surprised to see a management lead buyout. They even have a China connection for LI batteries.

8-K snip-On June 2, 2015, the Company’s Board of Directors approved an expansion and extension of the Share Repurchase Program, authorizing the repurchase of up to an additional 1.6 million common shares through June 2, 2016. Since the inception of the Share Repurchase Program on May 1, 2014, through June 4, 2015, the Company has repurchased 1,682,678 shares for an aggregate cost of $6,476,742 exclusive of any fees, commissions or other expenses related to such repurchases. The total balance for repurchase is now 1,717,322 shares under the Share Repurchase Program, which includes 117,322 shares remaining from the initial authorization of 1.8 million shares.

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To: richardred who wrote (3865)6/11/2015 1:32:50 PM
From: richardred
   of 6788
Permira Buys PopCorners as Dealmakers Remain Hungry for Healthy Options

Campbell Soup and ConAgra have also made better-for-you food deals recently
By Allison Collins

June 10, 2015

As dealmakers continue to crave better-for-you snack deals, private equity firm Permira is buying Medora Snacks LLC and Ideal Snacks Holding Corp.

Medora, headquartered in Middletown, New York, makes PopCorners, PopCorners Whole Grain, Pop Crinkles and popped bean chips. Liberty, New York-based Ideal is a contract manufacturer for popped snacks. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

London-based Permira will combine the two companies into one holding company called BFY Holdings I LLC, based in New York. Since 1985, Permira has raised more than $28 billion and invested in more than 200 companies. In October, Permira agreed to sell specialty chemicals maker Arysta LifeScience Ltd. to Platform Specialty Products. In March 2014, the firm sold Renaissance Learning to Hellman & Friedman. The firm's other portfolio companies include, Dr. Martens, LegalZoom and Telepizza.

In the food sector, dealmakers are mirroring consumers as they shift their choices towards healthier snack options.

"We are in the midst of a seismic shift within the food industry in which consumers are actively seeking out healthier snack products while not sacrificing taste," says Permira partner John Coyle.

Recent better-for-you food deals include Campbell Soup Co.'s (NYSE: CPB) acquisition of Garden Fresh Gourmet for $231 million, announced on June 9, and ConAgra Foods Inc.'s (NYSE: CAG) purchase of organic frozen meal business Blake's All Natural Foods. For more on the trend, see Snack Time.

P.S. Message 29439856

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To: richardred who wrote (3954)6/11/2015 6:18:24 PM
From: richardred
   of 6788
Twitter Ceo to resign! On the Street link. My SI link tells how Yahoo could avoid the tax . :+ )

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To: richardred who wrote (3936)6/11/2015 6:48:51 PM
From: richardred
   of 6788
The mega phone strikes-Cramer: The right time to buy Twitter.

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To: richardred who wrote (3964)6/14/2015 4:35:26 PM
From: richardred
   of 6788
An oldie that IMO might be coming to fruition.

Levenson snip> "Honestly, I think Twitter should go buy Yahoo," Levinsohn said. "If you separate Yahoo into the two businesses it really is -- a tracking company and an operating company -- if you put Twitter and Yahoo together, it would be the most powerful force in the media business."

SunTrust Snip >analyst Robert Peck, who predicted late last year that Twitter CEO Dick Costolo would leave the company this year and named Levinsohn as a candidate to take over the company.

Biz Break: Twitter soars after talk of Yahoo acquisition
By Jeremy C. Owens

Posted: 01/06/2015 03:35:22 PM PST 4 Comments | Updated: 5 months ago

FILE - A worker walks into Yahoo headquarters in Sunnyvale, Calif., in this July 29, 2009 file photo. (Paul Sakuma/AP photo)

Today: After former Yahoo interim CEO talks up an acquisition of his former company by Twitter, the San Francisco microblogging site's stock jumps. Also: Report claims Apple Watch to debut in March.

The Lead: Former Yahoo CEO says Twitter should buy Yahoo

Twitter stock soared Tuesday after former interim Yahoo CEO Ross Levinsohn suggested that the San Francisco social-networking company should buy Yahoo.

Twitter shares gained 6.5 percent to $38.76 Tuesday, easily the biggest jump in the SV150 -- the next largest percentage gain was 2.3 percent by Rocket Fuel, and no other major Silicon Valley tech company added more than 2 percent on the day. Most of Twitter's gains came in the afternoon session, after Levinsohn told CNBC that he believes Twitter should buy the core business of Yahoo.

"Honestly, I think Twitter should go buy Yahoo," Levinsohn said. "If you separate Yahoo into the two businesses it really is -- a tracking company and an operating company -- if you put Twitter and Yahoo together, it would be the most powerful force in the media business."

The comment came in discussion about a suggestion from SunTrust analyst Robert Peck, who predicted late last year that Twitter CEO Dick Costolo would leave the company this year and named Levinsohn as a candidate to take over the company. Later Tuesday, Peck put out a note in response to Levinsohn's suggestion, calling the idea "intriguing" and offering reasons it would be a beneficial pairing, such as synergies between Twitter and Tumblr.

"To be clear, this is merely a hypothetical scenario suggested on a media outlet at this point," Peck noted, before breaking down the convoluted financial mechanics such a move would need.

To make such a deal work, Yahoo would have to spin off its Asian assets, Peck wrote, leaving the company's core business plus about $9 billion in cash, mostly from its Alibaba IPO proceeds. After that move, Peck suggests Yahoo could command a $12 billion acquisition price, without accounting for the extra $9 billion in cash the company holds -- combining those two figures comes close to equaling Twitter's full market capitalization, which neared $23 billion with Tuesday's pop."While Twitter could apply a good portion of its cash toward the deal, it would need to raise more debt or a significant component of equity in any potential transaction," Peck determined.

Levinsohn played down any interest in the Twitter CEO position, applauding Costolo's work and mentioning Twitter executive Adam Bain as a potential in-house replacement. The Wall Street Journal later reported that Levinsohn had talked with Bain about a Yahoo-Twitter mobile partnership during Levinsohn's short rein as CEO of Yahoo.

Levinsohn was passed over for the permanent CEO position at Yahoo for Marissa Mayer, who has faced heat from investors for failing to resurrect the Internet giant in her two years at the helm. Fortune reporter Dan Primack noted that the entire wild scenario laid out by Levinsohn and Peck would result in Levinsohn running Yahoo after all.

There is nothing concrete to indicate Twitter is actually considering an acquisition of Yahoo -- it seems to be a fanciful acquisition scenario bandied about by analysts and outsiders, similar to last year's talk of Google purchasing eBay or unsubstantiated rumors of an Apple bid for Tesla Motors. In fact, there is another possible reason for Twitter's big Wall Street jump Tuesday: Rumors that activist investor Carl Icahn will buy Twitter stock and agitate for the company to be acquired by Google or Facebook. Again, there is little actual fire underneath that smoke, as the talk seems to be a result of a baseless 2015 prediction from a writer at The Street.

Yahoo also gained Tuesday, adding 0.2 percent to close at $49.21 and give the Sunnyvale company a market cap of more than $46 billion, double Twitter's current Wall Street valuation.

SV150 market report: Tech stocks sink as Apple reportedly plots Watch debut

Gains from Twitter and Yahoo couldn't boost tech stocks overall, as Wall Street continued to reel from the recent decline in oil prices and the tech-heavy Nasdaq plunged the most out of the three main Wall Street indexes.

Apple couldn't help boost Silicon Valley stocks, adding just a penny to close at $106.26 amid reports about its next wave of product releases. 9to5Mac's Mark Gurman dropped two reports of approaching Apple debuts Monday, including a prediction that the Apple Watch will begin selling in March. Gurman reported that representative from Apple's retail stores will visit the company's headquarters in Cupertino or its Austin, Texas, offices to receive training on selling the smartwatch in early- to mid-February in advance of a March launch, mirroring earlier reports of a spring launch. Gurman also reported that Apple plans to redesign its MacBook Air laptop this year and get rid of full-sized USB ports and SD card slots, which would follow the company discarding built-in optical-disc drives.

Google dropped 2.5 percent to $506.64 while plotting its future in televisions: The company is working with TV networks to help them sell video ad time through the Mountain View company's system, while completely jettisoning the Google TV effort for the new Android TV offering. Cisco dropped a penny to $27.05 while working with Charter on cloud cable-television delivery, and eBay fell 1.3 percent to $55.02 while naming a new board member from the TV industry. Gilead Sciences gained 0.9 percent to $97.65 after announcing the acquisition of a drug program aimed at liver diseases not caused by alcohol, and Yelp dropped 0.2 percent to $52.44 before declaring that the FTC investigation into its business practices has been closed with no action.

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To: richardred who wrote (3966)6/14/2015 4:45:17 PM
From: richardred
   of 6788
Apple/Twitter anyone? Google needs a new fixer upper project.

With Costolo Out, a Sale Might be Next for Twitter

As Twitter struggles to reinvent itself after the departure of chief executive Dick Costolo, the path forward might include a sale.

Twitter’s departing chief executive Dick Costolo hasn’t even left the building, and already some tech experts are talking takeover. Costolo announced Thursday he will step down July 1.

Of course, Twitter takeover talks are nothing new. Since the social media microblogging site went public in 2013, it has produced less than desired results for shareholders, including tepid user growth and earnings. But the company still has incredible value as one of the premier social media properties, and could find a happy home within a much larger company.

Here’s what Deutsche Bank had to say in a research note, out Thursday:

While most investors were eager to see CEO Dick Costolo step aside, we think he deserves much credit for scaling the business from $3B in value to over $25B over his six-year tenure, a feat few others in consumer internet can match. Further, the CEO dislocation coupled with no super-voting share structure, a board somewhat on the defensive, lots of potential asset value, and the current environment of cheap money--leads us to think [merger and acquisition] from a strategic [perspective] just became slightly more possible.

Deutsche Bank notes that, unlike Facebook and other tech peers, Twitter lacks a two-tiered common stock structure, which was the subject of a proxy vote at Facebook on Thursday. An absence of such a structure, makes Twitter an easier takeover target, some argue, because owner control is less concentrated.

The $100,000 question is who would bite. Here are some possibilities:

  • All eyes turn to Apple, which has the money. But it might not crack open its $178 billion hoard to fork over $33 billion for Twitter, its current valuation. True in 2013, it acquired social media analytics company Topsy Labs for $200 million. But social media does not appear to be a strong strategy for the consumer electronics maker.
  • More theories swirl around Google, with which Twitter recently inked a deal to rank tweets in Google searches. A mashup with Google Plus could bolster its own flagging social media endeavors.
Venture capitalist Ross Fubini, a partner at Canaan Partners, in Menlo Park, California, says the two companies have a lot better synergy elsewhere. And Twitter could ultimately become a network through which Google could serve its massive advertising inventory.

“The powerful thing about Twitter is the fact that it is a network for connecting consumers,” Fubini says, adding it has additional value as a destination replete with brands and celebrities. That could also make it appealing to a traditional media company such as Time Warner.

  • And then there’s Facebook. The company has $11 billion in cash on hand, and it’s shown an appetite for expensive purchases, such as its 2014 acquisition of mobile messaging application WhatsApp for $19 billion. And the two have reportedly been in talks before, which broke down over price, the first time in 2008 when Twitter had a valuation of a mere $500 million. More recently, price appears to have been a sticking point as well.
  • Don’t count out Microsoft either. The software company has shown more interest recently in hardware companies like Nokia, for which it paid $7.2 billion in 2014. But its 2012 acquisition of Yammer, known as the “Facebook for business,” for $1.2 billion shows it has some interest in social networking.

Finally, a merger of Yahoo and Twitter might be possible. “If you put Yahoo and Twitter together it would be the most powerful force in the media business,” former Yahoo chief executive Ross Levinsohn said in January. Who would buy whom is a matter of some debate, but Levinsohn said the two companies held informal talks about ways to combine the two media businesses in 2012.

In the short term, however, what’s likely to happen is that Twitter will bring on a new chief executive, and one with product development experience similar to Yahoo chief executive Marissa Mayer, technology experts say, and then look to sell itself after building audience share and active viewers. Speculation has swirled around an acquisition by Twitter of Flipboard, the social magazine app, which would give Twitter access to CEO and tech entrepreneur Mike McCue, also a former Twitter board member.

“McCue would be exceptional, and a great outcome for Twitter,” Fubini says.

Published on: Jun 12, 2015

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To: richardred who wrote (3934)6/14/2015 4:51:48 PM
From: richardred
   of 6788
RE-A CAT / MNTX speculation After all they know ASVI real well.

Cat CEO-“We’ve got a number of very small growth opportunities that we are looking at,” he said. In 2015, “we’ll probably do a couple of those but in terms of anything big it’s a pretty small chance.”

Snip.“We’ve got lots of capital to deploy, which I would rather use growing the business if we possible can,” Doug Oberhelman, chairman and chief executive officer, said today on Bloomberg Television’s “In the Loop with Betty Liu.”

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