Monday, October 01, 2007

Paperstand (NOK to acquire NVT; ACXM deal goes bust; UBS sees loss)

Accordingt to the WSJ, Nokia (NOK) last night was deep in discussions to purchase Navteq (NVT), marking what would be one of its largest-ever corporate acquisitions. With a $7.61bn mkt cap, Navteq is one of the world's leaders in electronic mapping, which enables in-vehicle navigation devices and a new generation of mobile-phone applications used for shopping, emergency services and advertising. The two sides have been in deep discussions over the past few weeks. It was still possible those discussions could crumble over a series of last-minute issues.

The WSJ reports that private-equity buyers of Acxiom (ACXM) are in negotiations about breaking off their proposed $2.25bn purchase of the data-mgmt co. The sides are trying to work out a settlement. Last night, it appeared an agreement was close, with the buyers probably paying about $65m, well below the $110m termination fee originally agreed to in the deal.

The WSJ reports that UBS (UBS) plans to write down as much as 4bn Swiss francs, or $3.41bn, in assets, including securities tied to US subprime mortgages. The big write-downs will make UBS one of the highest-profile casualties of the recent turmoil in global credit mkts and raises questions about the mgmt of its securities business, especially its expansion into the US. Another casualty is expected to be Huw Jenkins, chief of the bank's investment-banking division. UBS CEO Marcel Rohner is to personally oversee the division, replacing Mr. Jenkins. After taking a 3Q write-down of between 3-4bn francs on its fixed-income assets, UBS expects a loss for the quarter ranging from about 600-700m francs.

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