19 - 24 February 2018
Johnson & Johnson medical devices acquires Orthotaxy
ONEOK to invest US$ 2.3 bn for additional NGL and Natural Gas Infrastructure
THE DEFINITIVE SOURCE FOR INVESTMENT PROMOTION EXECUTIVES
Hyland to acquire OneContent business from Allscripts
Ashford Prime to acquire Ritz-Carlton Sarasota for US$ 171 mn
it & BPM i FOOD I HEALTHCARE i TEXTILES i INFRASTRUCTURE i ENGINEERING i tourism
Qualcomm Incorporated agrees US$ 44 bn deal for Dutch chipmaker NXP
Iberdrola will invest US$ 39 bn between 2018 and 2022
Read article on globalfdi.net
Ignacio Galán, the group's Chairman, said: “Overall, the plan we are presenting is fully consistent with our strategy over recent years, while seizing the opportunities provided by the new digital environment. In essence, it is a plan that maintains focus on growth in specific opportunities in regulated and long-term contracted businesses which offer earnings visibility, while maintaining a geographically balanced portfolio and exploring growth beyond those frontiers.”
Over 90% of capex will be allocated to networks (50%), renewables (37%) and contracted generation in Mexico (4%), business areas which will represent over 80% of Ebitda in 2022
Iberdrola's capital 'in progress' will stand at €9 billion at the end of the period, enabling further growth beyond 2022
The plan includes growth of Neoenergia in Brazil, a developing area along with the United States, improving the balance of EBITDA by currency: 35% in euros, 29% in dollars, 20% in pounds sterling and 16% in Brazilian reais
In 2022, net profit is forecast to be between €3.5bn and €3.7bn and the company's shareholder remuneration policy will be maintained, growing in line with results. Expected net income would imply reaching a dividend of €0.4 per share
COMMITMENT TO SOCIETY: SOCIAL DIVIDEND
Iberdrola maintains its commitment to job creation, generating 400,000 jobs globally through its activity
The company hired 4,103 persons in 2017 and continued to offer four times more training hours than European average 
The group asserts its strong commitment to emissions reduction - already 32% below its European competitors - and pledges to reach 150 gr CO2/kWh in 2030
Purchases made to its 22,000 suppliers were €8.7 billion in 2017
Over €7.1 billion in taxes and levies were paid by Iberdrola during the period
Iberdrola will invest €32 billion over the period between 2018-2022, setting solid foundations for sustainable growth in the next decade. More than 90% of total amount will be allocated to regulated activities or long-term contracts, in line with the group's strategy of investing in businesses with stable and predictable returns. Thus, €15.5 billion (nearly 50% of total) will be invested in networks, €11.5 billion (37% of total) in renewables and €2.8 billion (9%) in generation and retail. The remaining 4%, some €1.4 billion will be allocated to contracted generation.
Ignacio Galán, the group's Chairman, said: “Overall, the plan we are presenting today is fully consistent with our strategy over recent years, while seizing the opportunities provided by the new digital environment. In essence, it is a plan that maintains focus on growth in specific opportunities in regulated and long-term contracted businesses which offer earnings visibility, while maintaining a geographically balanced portfolio and exploring growth beyond those frontiers.”
The bulk of planned investments - 75% - are already committed or practically secured. By currency, 38% will be in US dollar, 25% in euro, 19% in British pound and 18% in Brazilian reais.
Iberdrola will invest US$ 39 billion between 2018 and 2022
ONEOK to invest US$ 2.3 billion for additional NGL and Natural Gas Infrastructure
ONEOK, Inc., announced plans to invest approximately $2.3 billion between now and 2020 to construct:
A new 400,000-barrel per day (bpd) natural gas liquids (NGL) pipeline – the Arbuckle II Pipeline – that will create additional NGL transportation capacity between ONEOK's extensive Mid-Continent infrastructure in Oklahoma and the company's existing NGL facilities in Mont Belvieu, Texas;
A new 125,000 bpd NGL fractionator – MB-4 – in Mont Belvieu, Texas, and related infrastructure; and
A new 200-million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) natural gas processing facility – the Demicks Lake plant and related infrastructure – in the Williston Basin.
"With more than $4 billion of announced capital-growth projects since June 2017, we continue to build off of our significant asset footprint," said Terry K. Spencer, ONEOK president and chief executive officer.
"The Arbuckle II Pipeline and MB-4 fractionator will help meet the needs of NGL producers in all of the basins where we operate, including the STACK and SCOOP areas and the Denver-Julesburg, Powder River, Williston and Permian basins," said Spencer. "These strategic projects complement our recently announced Elk Creek pipeline, increasing ONEOK's ability to deliver NGLs from the Rocky Mountain region to growing markets in the Gulf Coast.
These projects are expected to generate adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (adjusted EBITDA) multiples of four to six times. Following ONEOK's recently completed equity issuances totaling approximately $1.6 billion, project funding is expected to come from cash generated from operations and short- and long-term borrowings. ONEOK does not expect to issue additional equity in 2018 and well into 2019.
Arbuckle II Pipeline and MB-4:
The approximately 530-mile, 24- and 30-inch diameter Arbuckle II Pipeline is expected to cost approximately $1.36 billion and will have an initial capacity to transport up to 400,000 bpd of unfractionated NGLs originating across ONEOK's supply basins and extensive NGL gathering system to the company's storage and fractionation facilities at Mont Belvieu. The Arbuckle II Pipeline is expected to be completed in the first quarter 2020. The pipeline will have the capability to be expanded up to 1 million bpd with additional pump facilities, which could more than double ONEOK's current capacity between the Mid-Continent and Gulf Coast.
The new MB-4 fractionator and related infrastructure, which includes additional NGL storage capacity in Mont Belvieu, are expected to cost approximately $575 million and be completed in the first quarter 2020. ONEOK's total NGL fractionation capacity will increase to 965,000 bpd following the completion of MB-4.
Qualcomm Incorporated agrees US$ 44 billion deal for Dutch chipmaker NXP
Qualcomm Incorporated, announced that Qualcomm River Holdings B.V., an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Qualcomm, has reached an agreement with NXP Semiconductors N.V. (NASDAQ: NXPI) to increase to $127.50 per share its previously announced cash tender offer to purchase all outstanding shares of NXP. The amended agreement, which was approved by the Qualcomm and NXP Boards of Directors, also lowers the minimum tender condition from 80% of NXP’s outstanding shares to 70%.
Qualcomm also announced that Qualcomm River Holdings B.V. has entered into binding agreements with nine NXP stockholders who collectively own more than 28% of NXP’s outstanding shares (excluding additional economic interests through derivatives) to tender their shares at $127.50 per share. These stockholders include funds affiliated with Elliott Advisors (UK) Limited and Soroban Capital Partners LP.
Tom Horton, Presiding Director of the Qualcomm Board of Directors, said, “The acquisition of NXP will enable us to accelerate our growth strategy. The Board unanimously believes this is an attractive acquisition at this price for Qualcomm stockholders based on NXP’s recent strong financial performance, the growth in key strategic areas such as Auto and IoT and our high confidence in management’s ability to execute upon the synergy opportunities.”
Dr. Paul E. Jacobs, Chairman of the Board of Qualcomm, said, “NXP is a highly strategic and attractive acquisition for Qualcomm that enhances the value of our leading 5G technologies. We also believe the revised agreement provides certainty for both Qualcomm and NXP stockholders.”
AES Tietê has just signed a contract with the Mackenzie Presbyterian Institute for the installation of distributed generation and energy efficiency at the Alphaville campus . The solution package, to be implemented in the first half of 2018, has a solar carport (parking with photovoltaic panels) with an installed capacity of 537 kWp, and the exchange of campus lighting in buildings 1, 9 , 11, 14 and 15 by LED lamps. The combination of these two products could yield savings of up to R $ 90,000 per year, a reduction of 11%.
With an investment of R $ 3.5 million, the monthly savings of each will be up to R $ 7,500, in a red tariff, representing a month of average consumption of 410 Brazilian households. It is the largest private solar carport in Brazil and will be built on a parking lot of 200 spaces, covered by 1680 solar panels. It has an expected generation of 63,700 kWh / month, in addition to the added benefit of offering thermal comfort to vehicles. The energy efficiency solution involves the exchange of approximately 1939 light bulbs, saving 15,250 kWh / month.
According to Ítalo Freitas, president of AES Tietê, "one of the strategic directions of the company is to be recognized by our customers and shareholders as the main partner of innovative energy solutions, in view of the current repagination that passes the electric sector and the main trends technologies in Brazil and in the world, "he explains.
Reinaldo da Costa, superintendent of Mackenzie, points out that "the partnership of the Energy Efficiency Project between the Institution and Eletropaulo promotes the use of new technologies for a more efficient and sustainable consumption of energy, a permanent objective of our institution."
AES Tietê and Mackenzie sign partnership for Brazil's largest private solar carport
Vista Oil & Gas, S.A.B. de C.V., the first Mexican pure E&P listed company in the Mexican Stock Exchange, announced that it has agreed to acquire a fully operational oil & gas platform from Pampa Energía S.A. ("Pampa") and Pluspetrol Resources Corporation ("Pluspetrol") with interests in certain exploitation concessions, assessment blocks and exploration permits in Argentina (the "Acquired Assets" and collectively, the "Transaction"). The majority of the Acquired Assets are located in the Neuquina basin. After giving effect to the Transaction, Vista would become the fifth largest oil producer and operator in Argentina, according to the latest available information published by the Argentine Ministry of Energy and Mining.
Miguel Galuccio, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Vista, commented, "With this transaction, we found the right balance of current profitable production and reserves coupled with high-growth potential in Vaca Muerta, the most exciting emerging shale play globally – perfectly aligned with our vision. The platform and timing could not be better suited to start delivering on our plan of becoming the leading Latin American independent oil and gas company."
Highlights of the Transaction include:
proved reserves of 55.7 MMBoe (based on information as of December 31, 2016)
average daily production of 27,472 boed (based on information for the first nine months of 2017)
in excess of 137,000 acres in the Vaca Muerta unconventional play, including 54,000 acres in the core of Vaca Muerta's shale oil window that are ready for full scale development
2017 estimated pro-forma EBITDA of US$182 million
As part of the consummation of the Transaction, Riverstone Vista Capital Partners, L.P., an affiliate of Riverstone, has agreed to acquire an additional 5,000,000 Series A Shares for an aggregate purchase price of US$50 million pursuant to a forward purchase agreement entered into at the time of Vista's initial public offering. Furthermore, certain other investors, have also agreed to buy 10,000,000 Series A Shares of Vista, for an aggregate purchase price of US$100 million. These, in conjunction with the US$650 million initial public offering proceeds, brings total equity available to fund the Transaction to US$800 million.
Vista has also entered into a commitment letter pursuant to which a credit facility, of up to US$300 million, may be used as backstop with the purpose of increasing the certainty of closing the Transaction.
Vista Oil & Gas to acquire Argentine Oil & Gas assets
Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd., part of the USD 19 billion Mahindra Group, announced that it would be investing in Zoomcar India Private Limited and in Zoomcar Inc., its US incorporated holding parent company, in keeping with Mahindra’s thrust on the Shared Mobility Business.
Under the aegis of the deal, Mahindra Group would invest up to $26 million in Zoomcar India or Zoomcar Inc. which, on an as converted to common stock of Zoomcar Inc. on a fully diluted basis, would constitute approximately 16% stake in Zoomcar Inc.
Mahindra has been keen to invest in the shared mobility space as a part of its strategy to promote and participate in sustainable mobility solutions, including multi modal urban mobility. This is with the objective of enabling improved livelihoods and lifestyles of people, thereby enabling them to RISE. To that end, Mahindra has been promoting Electric Vehicles along with the promotion of shared mobility. This investment in India’s leading self-drive shared mobility company will enable the company to further its objectives in this area.
Greg Moran, Co-Founder & CEO, Zoomcar said, “We are incredibly excited to welcome the Mahindra team on board for this next phase of growth, within the Indian self-drive mobility space. Our collaboration with Mahindra dates back to 2013 when we first kicked off in Bangalore. Most importantly, Mahindra shares Zoomcar’s vision for multi-modal urban mobility and we look forward to leveraging their diverse platform to help accelerate the transformation to a shared, electric mobility future for India”.
Mahindra to Invest in Zoomcar
Samsung Electronics Breaks Ground on New EUV Line in Hwaseong, Korea
Samsung Electronics, a world leader in advanced semiconductor technology, announced that it broke ground on a new EUV (extreme ultraviolet) line in Hwaseong, Korea, aiming to maintain its leadership in state-of-the-art semiconductor technology.
With this new EUV line, Samsung will be able to strengthen its leadership in single nanometer process technology by responding to market demand from various applications, including mobile, server, network, and HPC (high performance computing), for which high performance and power efficiency are critical.
The new facility is expected to be completed within the second half of 2019 and start production ramp-up in 2020. The initial investment in the new EUV line is projected to reach USD 6 billion by 2020 and additional investment will be determined depending on market circumstances.
Samsung has decided to utilize cutting-edge EUV technology starting with its 7-nanometer (nm) LPP (Low Power Plus) process. This new line will be set up with EUV lithography equipment to overcome nano-level technology limitations. Samsung has continued to invest in EUV R&D to support its global customers for developing next-generation chips based on this leading-edge technology.
Marlabs Inc., a next-gen innovation company that specializes in providing 360-degree digital transformation frameworks, announced the inauguration of its new facility in Kochi, India.
Spread across 12000 square feet, this facility will exclusively focus on IoT innovation and ML solutions.
Inaugurating the new facility Mr. V J Kurian, Managing Director, Cochin International Airport Limited said, "Marlabs has been extremely successful and I was quite impressed by their innovation studio (lab). After seeing this I feel very confident that technology is going to make our lives simpler and more networked. We are very proud that Siby has started the center here in Kochi."
Commenting on the inauguration, Siby Vadakekkara, Chairman & CEO, Marlabs said, "We are seeing exciting growth in IoT, IoP and machine learning use-cases that are driving disruption in the supply chain of industries like life sciences, healthcare and financial services. With the advent of 5G, our new office in Kochi will play a vital role in accelerating transformation in these industries. We believe that there is a rich talent pool in Kochi that we hope to nurture, have them work on cutting-edge projects and make them successful in our digital journey."
Talking about the new facility, Salil Ravindran, Chief Financial Officer, Marlabs said, "We believe in breeding innovation within the company, as much as we focus on delivering innovative solutions to our clients. Expanding in Kochi is part of our inclusive innovation drive. We are extremely happy with the talent available in the region and confident of delivering higher value to our global customers at optimal costs and expanded digital capabilities in the region. I am particularly pleased with the employee retention rate in Kochi and I believe the city has all the right elements to become a big R&D hub for the industry."
Marlabs Inaugurates New Innovation Studio in Kochi, India
TiENPAY Limited announced their new subsidiary by means of a Joint Venture: TiENPAY Korea Co., Limited. TiENPAY Korea will serve as TiENPAY's first foray and springboard into the South Korea marketplace for mobile banking, e-wallet and cryptocurrency- related services.
TiENPAY Korea aims to tap into the vast potential for cryptocurrency- related services that uniquely exist inside South Korea. Given South Korea's high market penetration rate for cryptocurrency trading versus the global average, there is a developing need for related digital banking & e-wallet services that run parallel to cryptocurrency market movements. TiENPAY Limited is confident that the market for these types of services, especially in South Korea, is at the very beginning of a much larger trend.
TiENPAY Limited CEO, Mr. William Tien commented on the expansion of TiENPAY into South Korea. "South Korea is without a doubt the most dynamic and aggressive marketplace for cryptocurrency trading and overall traffic. TiENPAY Limited is being proactive and enterprising so as to fully capitalize on the many opportunities that exist inside South Korea."
TiENPAY Limited announces expansion into South Korea with new Joint Venture
Hyland has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the OneContent business from Allscripts, a leading provider of healthcare information technology solutions. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter, once customary closing conditions are satisfied. Upon transaction close, the OneContent client base and associates will transition to Hyland.
Recently acquired by Allscripts from McKesson, more than 300 customers rely on OneContent for their healthcare content management needs. Hyland plans to continue to support OneContent customers’ current solutions while enhancing the platform with new features and functionality, refining the integration with Allscripts’ Paragon EHR system and leveraging the complementary capabilities of the Hyland Healthcare suite. Hyland plans to partner closely with Allscripts in these efforts.
Hyland Healthcare combines information management and enterprise medical imaging with business process and case management capabilities, delivering a suite of unparalleled content and image management solutions to address the clinical, financial and operational needs of healthcare organizations around the world. The Hyland Healthcare suite of products – comprised of Acuo by Hyland, PACSgear, NilRead, Brainware by Hyland, OnBase by Hyland, Perceptive Content and ShareBase by Hyland – are leveraged to complete patient records, eliminate reimbursement delays and enhance business processes.
PT Astra International Tbk, announced a capital investment of USD150 million (approximately Rp2 trillion) at GO-JEK, Indonesia's largest provider of on-demand application - based services .
Combining Astra's extensive automotive expertise and GO-JEK range to consumers, the two companies that are national champions will explore opportunities for cooperation to boost productivity, encourage people to enter the formal economy sector, and support innovative products and services to create new markets . All this is done to encourage economic growth of Indonesia.
Since its inception, GO-JEK has created jobs for millions of Indonesians. The currently registered number of GO-JEK drivers reaches over 1 million drivers, with more than 125,000 business partners and 30,000 service providers on the GO-JEK platform, providing various services such as transportation, food delivery, courier goods, cleaning services, up to payment purposes. GO-JEK facilitates more than 100 million transactions per month.
Prijono Sugiarto, President Director of PT Astra International Tbk,said, "We are enthusiastic to be part of the outstanding GO-JEK journey. GO-JEK is a major player in Indonesia's digital economy and is led by the nation's solid management of the nation. Astra hopes that collaboration with GO-JEK will add value to Astra's business and accelerate Astra's digital initiative ".
Prijono added, "We are proud to support national champion like GO-JEK, which has a social mission to improve the welfare of Indonesian people. This is in line with Astra's commitment to support the development of micro, small and medium enterprises in Indonesia. Technology has an important role to achieve this goal, and we are confident in the digital transforming power of companies like GO-JEK. "
Astra International invest USD150 Million in GO-JEK
Hydro Systems to open new manufacturing facility in Georgia
Hydro Systems announced that they have purchased and will soon be opening a new manufacturing facility in McDonough, Georgia, a suburb of Atlanta located in Henry County. This new operation will create 60 manufacturing jobs initially and hopefully increase to 100 within the first year. Furthermore, this plant allows Hydro Systems to have a new hub for manufacturing and shipping to the Eastern United States.
"With over half of the United States population living east of the Mississippi we have been looking to expand our operations for the last couple years and finally found the right location. This new facility will allow us to reduce the lead time on all bathtub orders placed in the Eastern United States by weeks and save our customers money with reduced shipping costs. This a big expansion for our family-owned business, and we are excited to be making this move during our 40th year in business" said Hydro Systems President & Owner Scott Steinhardt.
Hydro Systems expects this facility to be fully operational during mid-year 2018. Additionally, it will allow orders placed by east coast customers to still be hand-crafted and custom made but delivered in about a week instead of waiting 3-4 weeks for products to be shipped from the California manufacturing facility.
TCHO, the award-winning, premium chocolate maker, announced its sale to Japanese food conglomerate Ezaki Glico. The innovative craft chocolate company was majority owned by Emil Capital Partners, a Growth and Venture Capital firm backed by European retail group Tengelmann.
Emil Capital is an entrepreneurial private investment company based in Greenwich, Connecticutthat seeks out companies whose products connect with the New American Consumer. Emil Capital initially invested in TCHO back in 2013, working with the company over a period of five years to support innovation, accelerate growth and improve customer experience. This exciting transaction is the product of that successful financial and strategic partnership. Emil Capital looks forward to watching TCHO continue to thrive and grow under the Glico group.
"This agreement brings together two companies that share a core philosophy of quality products and social values," said Marcel Bens, Chief Executive Officer for TCHO. "TCHO has a unique approach to sourcing, flavor and packaging – we work with farmers and cooperatives to help them produce better cocoa which is designed to benefit them and helps us make exceptionally delicious chocolate. Ezaki Glico is a company that understands, appreciates and will continue to support that business model. We couldn't be more pleased to be joining their family."
Ezaki Glico Co., Ltd. is a leading food company headquartered in Osaka, Japan. With 11 business locations, 23 group companies in Japan, and 12 subsidiaries in nine countries, Ezaki Glico operates a total of 19 plants with over 5,000 employees. Since their launch in 1922 of the nutritious, fortified Glico caramel, the business has adhered to the corporate philosophy of "A Wholesome Life in the Best of Taste".
Ezaki Glico acquires TCHO
Post Holdings’ Michael Foods business plan to build US$ 85 mn manufacturing facility
Post Holdings, Inc., a consumer packaged goods holding company, announced plans for its Michael Foods business to build a 150,000 square-foot manufacturing and distribution facility in Norwalk, Iowa.
Construction on the $85 million project is targeted to begin in summer 2018. The plant, which will process eggs and pre-cooked egg products, will be completed in 2019. The facility is expected to create 100-150 new jobs initially, ranging from entry-level to skilled in management, operations, finance and production.
“We looked at numerous locations in the Midwest, and Norwalk had many advantages. We look forward to Michael Foods becoming a preferred employer in the area and being part of the community,” said Steve Schonhoff, senior vice president of integrated supply chain.
“We are delighted that the internal growth at Michael Foods supports this expansion,” said Rob Vitale, president and chief executive officer of Post Holdings, Inc. “We believe it will further enhance our position as the nation’s leader in valued added egg products.”
Michael Foods is based in Minnetonka, Minnesota. The company’s foodservice brands include Papetti’s and Simply Potatoes. Michael Foods is the largest processor of value-added eggs in the United States.
Conagra Brands, Inc., Del Monte processed fruit and vegetable in Canada to Bonduelle Group. The sale is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to be completed before the end of May 2018 . The transaction is valued at approximately $ 43 million, which is approximately $ 34 million at the current exchange rate.
"We continue to reshape our portfolio strategy and drive value creation for shareholders," said Sean Connolly , president and chief executive officer of Conagra Brands. "Del Monte is a strong brand in Canada with quality products, and we believe the Del Monte processed fruit and vegetable business will continue to thrive under Bonduelle's ownership."
RBC Capital Markets served as financial advisor to Conagra Brands.
Conagra Brands Inc. to sell its Del Monte processed fruit and vegetable business in Canada to Bonduelle Group
Ashford Hospitality Prime, Inc., announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the 266-room Ritz-Carlton Sarasota in Sarasota, Florida (the "Ritz Sarasota" or the "Property") for $171 million ($643,000 per key). To fund the acquisition, the Company plans to use cash on its balance sheet as well as either drawing on its revolving credit line or securing a non-recourse mortgage loan on the property. As part of the transaction, the seller has agreed to provide a $5.5 million income guaranty to cover any decrease from 2017 hotel gross operating profit for up to three years, subject to certain conditions. In addition, the Company is also acquiring a 22 acre plot of vacant land for $9.7 million that is being entitled for residential development adjacent to the golf course.
"The acquisition of the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota is an opportunity for us to acquire a luxury resort property with a premier location in the upscale and growing Sarasota market," said Richard J. Stockton, Ashford Prime's President and Chief Executive Officer. "This property fits perfectly with our strategy of owning luxury hotels and resorts and further diversifies our portfolio while also increasing the overall RevPAR of our portfolio, which is already the highest among our hotel REIT peers."
Located on Sarasota Bay in downtown Sarasota, the Property, with its premier location, luxury brand affiliation and world-class amenities, is positioned as the leading resort in one of country's fastest growing markets. Sarasota, located approximately 60 miles south of Tampa, is a popular and growing upscale, year-round destination on the west coast of Florida. Beyond the first-class hotel experience, guests have easy access to the Sarasota area's many amenities and activities, including exceptional dining and shops, art galleries, beaches, museums, boating, fishing, and golfing.
The Ritz-Carlton Sarasota was built in 2001 and has 266 luxurious and spacious rooms, including 31 suites. The resort also offers an array of amenities, including a 26,000 sq. ft. Beach Club with 410 feet of beachfront, a private, luxury Tom Fazio-designed Golf Club, the award-winning 15,000 sq. ft. Ritz-Carlton Spa Club, eight food and beverage outlets, including the acclaimed Jack Dusty waterfront restaurant, 29,000 sq. ft. of flexible indoor meeting space, two outdoor pools, 24-hour state-of-the-art fitness club, lighted tennis courts and the Ritz Kids Club. The Property is in excellent physical condition after having received over $21 million in capital improvements during the past few years. Post-closing, the property will continue to be managed by Ritz-Carlton.
In addition, the Ritz Sarasota has been the recipient of the following awards:
AAA Five Diamond Lodging Award
Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Award - Hotel
Conde Nast Traveler – Reader's Choice Award
TravelandLeisure.com – America's Best Beach Hotels
Travel & Leisure's Reader's Survey – World's Best Hotels
Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Award – The Ritz Carlton Spa
Travel & Leisure – World's Best Spas
Zagat – America's Top Golf Courses
Ashford Prime to acquire Ritz-Carlton Sarasota
for $171 mn
Holiday Inn Express Moscow – Sheremetyevo Airport announces its opening
IHG one of the world’s leading hotel companies, announces the opening of Holiday Inn Express Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport. Located within walking distance to terminals D, E and F at Sheremetyevo International Airport, Russia’s largest airport by passenger numbers, the hotel is in a prime location to accommodate Russian and international travellers, as well as the crew of leading airlines.
Moscow Sheremetyevo International Airport is the largest hi-tech terminal complex in Eastern Europe with 35 million passengers a year (according to Aviaport agency) and is a leading Russian cargo hub. The convenient location of the hotel to the Aeroexpress terminal allows guests to travel to the centre of Moscow in just 35 minutes by train to Belorussky station.
The hotel has 190 ‘Next Generation’ Holiday Inn Express rooms, designed in line with guest feedback. Each feature wide beds with noise-absorbing headboards, bed-side built-in USB ports, plasma screens that can be connected to personal media devices and free Wi-Fi available throughout the hotel. The rooms are inspired by business class seats on airplanes, creating a unique working space and combining it with a traditional relaxation zone.
The hotel’s interior and its color scheme add to the state-of-the-art design which is fresh, dynamic and cosy at the same time. The smart design of the Express Café & Bar as well as the lobby area make the hotel a stylish spot to meet with colleagues or relax with friends after a long flight or while waiting for take-off.
Holiday Inn Express hotels offer all the essentials travellers needs including a modern design and convenient location, making them an excellent choice for those on a city visit or stopover.
Associated Luxury Hotels International, recently expanded its worldwide portfolio, options in Europe and “ALHI Convention Collection” with the addition of the acclaimed Gothia Towers in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Together with the adjoined Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre, Gothia Towers is Europe’s largest fully integrated hotel, exhibition and congress facility, and one of Europe’s five biggest hotels. ALHI’s distinguished membership portfolio features more than 250 luxury and upper-upscale hotels and resorts around the world, which are either independent or are with an independent hotel brand, and which specialize in serving meetings and incentive programs. ALHI now represents Gothia Towers to the North American and European meetings, conventions and incentive market, according to ALHI’s Chief Sales Officer Mark Sergot.
With this new addition, ALHI’s luxury portfolio includes 38 distinctive hotels and resorts in Western Europe; 13 in Eastern Europe; more than 150 in the USA and Canada; 33 in Asia; 13 in the Middle East; 9 in Africa; 16 in the Bahamas, Bermuda, Caribbean region and Mexico; and 4 in South America. ALHI’s portfolio also features 23 luxury cruise ships appropriate for meetings and incentive programs, and Destination Management Companies (DMCs) in 100-plus locations worldwide.
Ideally situated in the heart of Gothenburg in the center of Scandinavia, Gothia Towers provides the perfect location for experiencing the sights, restaurants, shopping and nightlife of the vibrant city and picturesque region. Offering 1,200 guest rooms, most of which provide magnificent city views, the hotel also features 60 meeting rooms with a total of 441,320 square feet of meeting and exhibition space. Meeting options include the 21,527-square-foot Congress Hall, which can seat 1,500 guests, and a 40,902-square-foot Exhibit Hall. In addition, the hotel offers five restaurants, including Heaven 23, which provides panoramic views from the top floor of Tower 1, as well as the critically acclaimed gourmet restaurant Upper House Dining & Lounge. The hotel is just a short walk to the city’s celebrated The Avenue boulevard, the Liseberg amusement park, Universeum science center, and the Museum of World Culture. Gothenburg-Landvetter Airport is only 20 minutes away.
Associated Luxury Hotels International adds Gothia Towers to its Portfolio
Granite Construction to acquire Layne Christensen in US$ 565 Million
Granite Construction Incorporated, and Layne Christensen Company, announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement whereby Granite will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Layne in a stock-for-stock transaction valued at $565 million, including the assumption of net debt. The transaction, which was unanimously approved by the Boards of Directors of both companies, is expected to close in the second quarter of 2018.
"This strategic transaction brings together two complementary organizations to create a platform for growth, delivering significant benefits for shareholders, employees, and customers," said James H. Roberts, President and Chief Executive Officer of Granite. "With Layne's expertise and leading water positions, Granite will advance its goal of becoming a full suite provider of construction and rehabilitation services for the water and wastewater market. With enhanced scale and capabilities, Granite will be better positioned to address the growing water and wastewater needs throughout the infrastructure lifecycle. We expect this transaction will create value for shareholders in both the near- and long-term, including earnings accretion on an adjusted basis and synergy realization. As a stronger player in the attractive water and wastewater sector, we will have significant opportunities to capture a larger share of the market and accelerate our growth prospects."
"We are pleased to reach this agreement with Granite, which creates significant value for all Layne stakeholders," said Michael J. Caliel, President and Chief Executive Officer of Layne. "Our organization believes that Granite is the right partner. This is a terrific opportunity as our shareholders will receive a significant premium and share in the upside potential in a diversified and growing company with greater scale and resources. Our customers will benefit from our shared commitment to operational excellence, quality, and customer service, and our employees will benefit from the upside and strong growth prospects of being part of a larger infrastructure company. Our leadership position in water resources combined with our increasing presence in the growing water midstream business should be greatly enhanced by our combination with Granite. The Layne team looks forward to working together with Granite to implement a seamless transition."
Johnson & Johnson medical devices companies acquires Orthotaxy
Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies, through its French subsidiary, Apsis SAS, announced the acquisition of Orthotaxy, a privately held company that develops software technologies for surgery, including a differentiating solution of assisted robotic surgery. This proprietary technology is currently in its initial phase of development for partial and total knee replacement, and Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies plans to expand its scope to other orthopedic surgical procedures.
The goal is to develop a cost-effective, time-saving, easy-to-use orthopedic orthopedic surgery solution in a wide variety of healthcare settings. Orthotaxy technology will be the key element of a complete orthopedic solution utilizing innovative technologies developed to customize procedures, optimize surgery and bring value to clients and patients. Founded by Stéphane Lavallée, an innovator in robotics, Orthotaxy is a company that designs and develops computer-assisted surgical platforms.
"Our goal is to bring aided robotic surgery technology to the marketplace as an integral part of a comprehensive orthopedic platform designed to bring value to patients, physicians, and healthcare professionals across the care continuum." said Ciro Romer , Company Group Chairman of DePuy Synthes, the Orthopedics branch of Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies.
The acquisition underscores the company's commitment to building an innovative and comprehensive digital surgery platform designed to bring value to customers and improve the quality of care for as many patients as possible.
Quidel Corporation to establish new Business Service Centre in Galway city
Quidel Corporation, a market leader in the development, manufacture and marketing of rapid diagnostic testing solutions announced it is to establish a Business Service Centre in Galway city to support its new international business, targeting the creation of 75 jobs over five years.
The project is supported by the Irish Government through IDA Ireland.
The company, headquartered in San Diego, California, employs approximately 1,200 people in operations in North America, Europe, Latin America, Japan, and other parts of Asia.
Quidel is currently recruiting professionals for the Galway operation in a range of functional areas including Finance, Human Resources, Customer Service, Technical Support, Sales, Marketing, IT and Legal. Through the Business Service Centre, Quidel will be better positioned to serve customers in an expanding international market.
Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD, warmly welcomed the announcement from Quidel and said, “The investment announcement by Quidel today reaffirms Ireland’s position as one of the international leaders in the Medtech industry. I am pleased that Quidel has chosen to establish a Business Service Centre in Galway city that will result in the creation of 75 high quality jobs in the West of Ireland. This new facility is a further example of the success of our commitment under the Regional Action Plans for Jobs to provide quality jobs in regional locations.”
Douglas Bryant, Quidel Corporation’s President and CEO, said: “There are many very talented people here, and Quidel is proud to partner with Martin Shanahan and IDA Ireland to bring jobs to Galway. Our company has recently doubled in size, and we believe that Galway can serve as a linchpin for our growing international presence.”
IDA Ireland CEO Martin Shanahan said: “This is a terrific announcement from a new name investor in the medical device space in Ireland which will have a very positive impact on Galway city, county and the wider West region. The jobs being created are high value service roles. I wish Quidel every success here and will follow their progress with interest.”
Quidel is excited to partner with Collins McNicholas on the recruiting efforts for the Galway business centre.
A new era of scientific advancement is emerging at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital with the development of a $412-million advanced research center, announced by the institution.
Designed as an interactive hub of exploration and discovery, the more than 625,000-square-foot center will cultivate transformative research and collaboration and attract scientists and clinicians to St. Jude. Slated to break ground in spring 2018 and open in 2021, it is a major component of a $1 billion capital expansion of the St. Jude campus.
The advanced research center builds on the St. Jude legacy of innovations for understanding and treating childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Architecturally, it will be an interactive and interdisciplinary environment designed specifically for generating new ideas and teamwork. Its labs and spaces will enable researchers to collaborate openly and across departments. The center will stream natural light through open atriums and courtyards and will feature numerous interaction zones uniting key disciplines of science.
Developed by The Crump Firm, lead architect on the project, and Jacobs Engineering, experts in lab design, the advanced research center will feature state-of-the-art labs focusing on immunology, neurobiology, cell and molecular biology, gene editing, metabolomics, advanced microscopy, epigenetics, genomics, immunotherapy and RNA biology. The center will also house cutting-edge technologies and resources that can transform science and accelerate the pace of discovery.
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital to developUS$ 412 mn advanced research center
GNC Holdings, Inc., announced it has reached an agreement regarding a strategic partnership and China joint venture agreement with Harbin Pharmaceutical Group Holding Co., Ltd ("Hayao"), a leading pharmaceutical company in China.
Under the terms of the agreement Hayao will invest approximately $300 million in GNC, becoming the single largest shareholder in GNC (on an as converted basis). In addition, GNC and Hayao have agreed to form a joint venture for the manufacturing, marketing, sale and distribution of GNC-branded products in China, leveraging the synergies between Hayao and GNC in the fast growing Chinese market. CITIC Capital Holdings Limited ("CITIC Capital"), as a major shareholder of Hayao, is supportive of the transaction.
GNC also announced plans to amend certain terms and extend the maturity date of its existing term loan facility due March 2019. The Company is seeking to extend the maturity date of the facility by two years, to March 2021. Upon effectiveness of the amendment, the maturity date of the term loans held by lenders consenting to the amendment will be extended by two years, the Company's existing Revolving Credit Facility will be cancelled and GNC will enter into a New $100 million ABL Revolver. The Company will also issue a $275 million ABL Term Loan as part of the maturity extension. GNC has the been in discussions with its largest term loan lenders who have indicated their support for the extension until March 2021 and to permit the Company to enter into a new asset based credit facility concurrently with the closing of the proposed amendment and extension. As noted, the Hayao transaction is conditioned upon the successful completion of these negotiations.
Zhang Zhenping, Chairman of Hayao, commented, "GNC is one of the most recognized health & wellness brands globally. We are excited about the opportunity to partner with Ken and his leadership team to drive long-term value creation in all markets in which Hayao and GNC operate. In China we are confident that we can leverage Hayao's leadership to accelerate the Company's growth and expansion and deliver GNC products and solutions to millions."
China's Harbin Pharma to buy stake in U.S. health retailer GNC
The European Investment Bank (EIB) and ING signed an agreement to support green investments for the European shipping market for a total value of $368 million. ING and EIB will each contribute EUR 150m to the facility. This agreement will ensure that sponsors of green and sustainable projects in the maritime transport sector can benefit from advantageous financial terms.
The facility is available to clients with significant European interests, and can be used for projects with a green innovation element covering the construction of new vessels or retrofitting of existing vessels. It applies to both inland shipping and seagoing operators
This agreement forms part of ING’s wider sustainability strategy, which aims to facilitate and finance society’s shift to sustainability – environmental, economic, and social. To this end, we are helping to develop and promote sustainable business models and explore how sustainable financing can help support energy transition and combat climate change.
“I think it’s no secret that the shipping sector is a major contributor to CO2 emissions. Climate action is one of the EIB’s top priorities, and this type of financing should be seen as an incentive for ship owners to consider doing things differently. ” said EIB President Werner Hoyer. “The facility was set up after numerous discussions with Dutch counterparts from the public and private sector and aims to help the shipping sector transition to a greener future. ”
Isabel Fernandez, Head of Wholesale Banking at ING, added: “Sustainability is an important strategic priority for ING and we are very proud to partner with the EIB to encourage our shipping clients to think about more green and sustainable financing options. This agreement helps us support our shipping clients into making changes to their business models by adapting for the future in increasingly sustainable way, and supports them throughout their green journey.”
This sector risk-bearing facility is meant for projects that will improve the environmental performance of transport vessels in terms of reducing the emission of pollutants as well as increasing fuel efficiency. Projects should be presented to ING and will be subject to ING’s financial and non-financial risk acceptance criteria.
The European Investment Bank (ElB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals. Last year the EIB provided some EUR 2.18bn for projects in the Netherlands.
ING and EIB provide US$ 368 million to finance green shipping
ADB provides $360 million for Rolling Stock to boost Bangladesh Railway
The Board of Directors of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved loans totaling $360 million to buy modern rolling stock and support reform in Bangladesh Railway to help promote a shift from roads to rail
“Railways in Bangladesh potentially offer a cheaper, safer, and more fuel-efficient means of transport of goods and passengers than roads, but have been held back by lack of investment and aging and unreliable rolling stock,” said Tsuneyuki Sakai, an ADB Senior Transport Specialist. “The ADB Railway Rolling Stock Operations Improvement Project will boost the operational performance of Bangladesh Railway by introducing new technology, equipment, and processes that will be cleaner and more efficient, cutting carbon dioxide emissions.”
Historically, railways enjoyed a monopoly as a carrier and transported most commodities. However, its market share has dropped because of inadequate investment in railway infrastructure and rolling stock over an extended period. This has resulted in unreliable freight operations and uncomfortable experiences for passengers. Most rolling stock is more than 30 years old, and much is past the end of its economic life. Maintenance facilities have also not improved over time and are not adequately equipped.
Under its Seventh Five-Year Plan for fiscal years 2016-2020, the government has placed special emphasis on railway development, setting targets to increase the market share to 15% in freight transport and 10% in passenger movements by 2020.
The Railway Reform Project under the 2006 program introduced financial reforms and an enterprise resource planning information technology (IT) system. A loan approved in 2015 is also procuring rolling stock and maintenance equipment, for which work is ongoing to 2020.
This latest project seeks to address the investment and modernization needs of Bangladesh Railway. It will procure 40 broad gauge locomotives, 125 luggage vans, and 1,000 wagons for freight trains for use on major lines of the rail network. The rolling stock will introduce auxiliary power units (APU) to Bangladesh Railway, to significantly reduce diesel consumption when the locomotives are idling. The project will also draw up investment plans for urgently required maintenance facilities, establish training programs for the drivers, and run the enterprise-wide IT system.
Digital ecosystems and entrepreneurs are essential to innovation and development in Africa. With support from the World Bank, the Botswana Business Angels Network and the Global Entrepreneurship Network in Botswana brought together local entrepreneurs and global thought leaders to share knowledge and strengthen the operating environment for digital entrepreneurs in the country.
The workshop built upon the recent XL Africa competition, a pan-African acceleration program to find the 20 most promising digital start-ups in Africa and demonstrate that Africa can produce world-class digital entrepreneurial talent.
Through relevant case studies, participants were exposed to methods and tools to help accelerate digital entrepreneurship. With a supportive and dynamic ecosystem, local digital technology companies can spread new technologies across Botswana and abroad.
World Bank Supports Young Digital Entrepreneurs in Botswana
During a high-level visit to Kigali later this week the European Investment Bank is expected to confirm EUR 69 million of new infrastructure and private sector investment in Rwanda. This will include announcement of the EIB’s first public sector investment in the country to support construction of the first public sewage system in Rwanda. Once operational the new sewage network will both transform the urban environment in Kigali and further enhance recognition of Rwanda’s capital as a green city.
New credit lines to support investment by entrepreneurs and small business across the country will also be unveiled.
The European Investment Bank is the world’s largest international public bank owned directly by the 28 EU member states and has operated in Rwanda since 1977.
“The European Investment Bank is a key international financing partner for our country and I welcome new EIB support for public and private investment across Rwanda to be confirmed during their visit to Kigali. This will also provide an opportunity to discuss future investment across a number of sectors in Rwanda by the European Investment Bank.” said Claver Gatete, Rwandan Minister of Finance and Economic Planning.
EIB to announce US$ 83 million new investment in Rwanda
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