GE Transportation to merge with Wabtec in
US$ 11 bn deal
21 - 26 May 2018
IHG expands in Thailand with eight
Adobe to acquire Magento for
US$ 1.6 bn
Blackstone to buy LaSalle Hotel Properties for US$ 4.8 bn
NextEra to buy Gulf Power
for US$ 6.5 bn
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Korea announces US$ 5 bn financial package for Africa
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Adobe, announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Magento Commerce, a market-leading commerce platform, for $1.68 billion, subject to customary purchase price adjustments. The addition of the Magento Commerce Cloud will enable commerce to be seamlessly integrated into the Adobe Experience Cloud, delivering a single platform that serves both B2B and B2C customers globally. The Magento Platform brings together digital commerce, order management and predictive intelligence into a unified commerce platform enabling shopping experiences across a wide array of industries.
Adobe is the leader in designing and delivering digital experiences through content and data. At the core of every great experience are content and data, which enable the consistent, personal, intuitive experiences consumers have come to expect. Commerce is also integral to the customer experience. Consumers and businesses now expect every interaction to be shoppable – whether on the web, mobile, social, in-product or in-store.
Magento brings Adobe Experience Cloud digital commerce enablement and order orchestration for both physical and digital goods across a range of industries, including consumer packaged goods, retail, wholesale, manufacturing and the public sector. The Magento Platform is built on proven, scalable technology supported by a vibrant community of more than 300,000 developers. The Magento partner ecosystem provides thousands of pre-built extensions, including payment, shipping, tax and logistics. This level of flexibility gives businesses the ability to quickly ramp and iterate their commerce capabilities for their unique business needs.
Adobe to acquire Magento
for US$ 1.6 billion
Thoma Bravo to sell PowerPlan to Roper Technologies
Thoma Bravo, a leading private equity investment firm, has entered into a definitive agreement to sell PowerPlan, the market-leading provider of mission-critical corporate performance management (CPM) software to many of the largest and most complex companies in asset-intensive industries, to Roper Technologies. The company is being acquired by Roper for $1.1 billion, and the transaction is expected to close in the second quarter.
The planned exit culminates a productive partnership between Thoma Bravo and PowerPlan. Since its acquisition in 2015, Thoma Bravo guided the company in building a next-generation, cloud-based platform, not only strengthening PowerPlan’s core value proposition, but also further enabling its expansion into both adjacent vertical markets and international markets outside the U.S. and Canada. Thoma Bravo’s approach of working with the company’s existing management resulted in an increase in the company’s valuation, a significant expansion in both recurring revenue and profitability, and an acceleration in organic revenue growth. This was made possible via numerous innovations to the company’s product and service offerings that occurred during dramatic market-changing events, including those associated with recent federal tax reform.
IBM adding 1,800 jobs in France and new tech training
IBM is announcing a set of investments and initiatives in France that will create 1,800 jobs during the next two years, in leading-edge areas like AI, blockchain, cloud computing and IoT. This is coupled with a major expansion in France of the world's largest network of training programs for "new collar" skills.
The investment in new jobs and training was announced by IBM's Chairman, President and CEO Ginni Rometty, in conjunction with the Tech for Good Summit, hosted by French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris.
IBM plans to hire business consultants, IT architects, developers and technical experts, including both new graduates and experienced professionals. The 1,800 new jobs include 400 AI-related roles IBM announced in March at the French AI for Humanity summit.
Mercedes-Benz Cars is expanding its capacities for electric cars in Europe. The Hambach plant in France will produce a compact electric car of the new product and technology brand EQ. “20 years ago we started an exemplary German-Franco project with the production of the smart in Hambach. Now we take the next step and for the first time in our more than 100-year old history we bring the production of Mercedes-Benz to France. With the compact EQ model from Hambach we continue our electric initiative,” says Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars after a meeting with the French President Emmanuel Macron at the Élisée Palace in Paris.
Mercedes-Benz Cars plans to launch more than ten electric cars by 2022: throughout all segments, from smart to large SUVs. The company assumes that unit sales of electric models will represent a share of somewhere between 15 and 25 percent of total Mercedes-Benz sales by 2025. From 2020, the brand smart will only offer electric vehicles. Thereby, smart will be the first automotive brand of the world, which completely changes from combustion engines to electric drives.
Mercedes-Benz invests US$ 600mn to produce new electric cars in France
The number of electric vehicles (EVs) worldwide is growing rapidly and BP is working across the supply chain to support the development of the technologies and infrastructure required to support that growth. BP believes that ultra-fast charging will be key in accelerating the adoption of EVs worldwide.
Tufan Erginbilgic, chief executive, Downstream, said: “Ultra-fast charging is at the heart of BP’s electrification strategy. StoreDot’s technology shows real potential for car batteries that can charge in the same time it takes to fill a gas tank. With our growing portfolio of charging infrastructure and technologies, we’re excited by our opportunities to develop truly innovative EV customer offers. We are committed to be the fuel provider of choice – no matter what car our customers drive.”
StoreDot has developed a lithium ion-based battery technology which enables ultra-fast charging for the mobile and industrial markets. Using this technology, StoreDot is also developing a new type of electric-car battery that will aim to achieve a charging experience that is comparable to the time spent to refuel a traditional car. StoreDot currently expects first sales of its flash batteries for mobile devices as early as 2019.
BP invests in battery company StoreDot
NextEra to buy Gulf Power for US$ 6.5 billion
NextEra Energy, Inc. announced it has entered into definitive agreements with Southern Company to acquire Gulf Power, Florida City Gas and its ownership interests in the Oleander and Stanton natural-gas generating plants located in Florida in transactions valued at approximately $6.475 billion, including the assumption of approximately $1.4 billion of Gulf Power debt. The companies are expected to benefit from NextEra Energy's industry-leading operating capabilities, with an intense focus on continuous improvement and a culture of innovation.
As one of the nation's largest and cleanest electric companies, Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) serves nearly five million customer accounts or an estimated 10 million people across nearly half of the state of Florida. FPL's typical residential customer bill is approximately 20 percent below the other Florida investor-owned utilities and nearly 30 percent below the national average. In 2017, FPL delivered its best-ever full-year period of service reliability and was recognized as being the most reliable electric utility in the Southeast. FPL also has a proven track record of making smart investments in modernizing its power generation fleet and strengthening its energy grid. NextEra Energy's culture of continuous improvement and focus on smart investments that reduce operations and maintenance (O&M) expenses has helped drive significant productivity enhancements, which has resulted in FPL's industry-leading cost position. For the past four years, FPL has had the lowest non-fuel O&M cost per kilowatt-hour in the country.
Blackstone to buy LaSalle Hotel Properties
for $4.8 billion
LaSalle Hotel Properties announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement with affiliates of Blackstone Real Estate Partners VIII, under which Blackstone, a leading global asset manager, will acquire all outstanding common shares of beneficial interest of LaSalle for $4.8 billion.
“We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Blackstone, which we believe is in the best interests of our shareholders and represents the culmination of a thorough review of strategic alternatives,” said Stuart L. Scott, Chairman of the Board of LaSalle. “As part of the Board’s review, the Company and its advisors contacted 20 potential buyers, including strategic parties, brands and private equity firms. As a result, 10 potential buyers executed confidentiality agreements and received non-public information, and the Board engaged in extensive negotiations over price and terms. After careful consideration of multiple proposals received, the Board determined that this transaction represents the most compelling opportunity for LaSalle’s shareholders, delivering a significant premium with immediate and certain cash value.”
Michael D. Barnello, President and Chief Executive Officer of LaSalle said, “After a robust and competitive process, we are pleased to enter into this transaction with Blackstone, which has a proven ability to complete large transactions on agreed terms and has extensive experience in the real estate industry.”
Acquisition is enabling DHL Supply Chain to gain a competitive footprint in Colombia, a country with increasing competitiveness ranking and a favorable environment for foreign investment.
DHL Supply Chain, the contract logistics specialist within Deutsche Post DHL Group, has acquired Suppla Group, specialized on providing logistics services in Colombia. Suppla is recognized as a premier logistics provider with local expertise and longstanding customer relationships. With an established products portfolio, including warehousing and packaging services across Life Sciences and Healthcare, Retail, Consumer, and Technology sectors, Suppla has a solid business model with experienced management, stable business principles, and structured governance.
With a longstanding expertise as a national logistics provider, Suppla has a solid local presence in five regions and coverage of 25 cities of Colombia, about 500,000 square meters of storage capacity and around 4,500 employees. This experience in local logistics market is enabling DHL Supply Chain to significantly improve its footprint in Colombia.
DHL acquires Suppla company in Colombia
GE Transportation to merge with Wabtec in a
US$ 11 billion deal
Wabtec Corporation has entered into a definitive agreement to combine with GE Transportation, a unit of General Electric Company. The combination will make Wabtec a Fortune 500, global transportation leader in rail equipment, software and services, with operations in more than 50 countries.
Both companies are expected to benefit from the cyclical tailwinds they are experiencing as industry conditions improve. GE Transportation revenues and EBIT are expected to grow at double digit CAGRs from 2017A to 2019E as the cycle rebounds from trough levels. The GE Transportation business is positioned for a significant rebound, with estimated adjusted EBITDA growing from about $750 million in 2018 to between
Middleby to acquire Taylor Company for US$ 1bn
The Middleby Corporation announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the Taylor Company from UTC Climate, Controls & Security, a unit of United Technologies for $1.0 billion. Taylor is a world leader in beverage solutions, soft serve and ice cream dispensing equipment, frozen drink machines, and automated double‐sided grills. Middleby will finance the all‐cash acquisition under its existing revolving credit facility. In 2017, Taylor had revenues of approximately $315 million and $65 million of adjusted earnings before interest, taxes and depreciation (“EBITDA”). The transaction has been structured to provide Middleby with a tax step‐up with a net present value of approximately $150 million. The transaction completion is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals, with an expected closing early in the third quarter of 2018.
Purina inaugurates new Pet Food Distribution Center in Hartwell, Georgia
Nestlé Purina commemorated the opening of its newest distribution center in Hartwell, Georgia. The site is also the future home of the company's 21st manufacturing facility, where popular and high-quality Purina pet food brands will be produced beginning in mid-2019.
The 190,000-sq ft distribution center currently employs more than 40 people and distributes Purina dog and cat food to retailers throughout the southeast region. Purina's leading brands in the U.S. include Purina ONE, Tidy Cats, Beneful, Friskies, Fancy Feast and Purina Pro Plan.
"We're thrilled to have the leading pet food company in the U.S. make this kind of investment in Hartwell," said Brandon Johnson, Mayor of Hartwell. "Purina's expansion here reinforces our actions to support industry, agriculture and our continuing emphasis on workforce development."
Pat Masching, Purina's Vice President & Director of Manufacturing, said, "We're excited to mark the completion of the first phase of this project. Pet care is a growing part of Nestlé's business, and the opening of the distribution center in Hartwell represents the first step in Purina's journey to expand production capacity into Hartwell, which will help us meet consumer demand."
Kroger and Home Chef to join forces to Revolutionize Mealtime
The Kroger Co. and Home Chef, the country's largest private meal kit company, announced a merger agreement that will significantly accelerate availability of meal kits and position the combined company to lead the way in revolutionizing how families shop for, prep, and cook their meals. The initial transaction price is $200 million and future earnout payments of up to $500 million over five years are contingent on achieving certain milestones, including significant growth of in-store and online meal kit sales.
"Customers want convenience, simplicity and a personalized food experience. Bringing Home Chef's innovative and exciting products and services to Kroger's customers will help make meal planning even easier and mealtime more delicious," said Yael Cosset, Kroger's chief digital officer. "This merger will introduce Kroger's 60 million shoppers to Home Chef, enhance our ship-to-home and subscription capabilities, and contribute to Restock Kroger."
Home Chef features delicious and approachable meals that fit every taste preference and easy-to-follow recipes for every experience level. They currently lead the industry with the most variety among the leading meal kit companies and have gone beyond the one-size-fits-all model to bring new innovations like 5 Minute Lunches, Flexible Serving options, and new, easy-to-prepare meals that require minimal prep. Home Chef's offerings complement Kroger's Prep+Pared offering that is currently available in more than 525 stores.
Home Chef employs approximately 1,000 employees, is headquartered in downtown Chicago, and operates three distribution centers in Chicago, Atlanta and San Bernardino. Home Chef's distribution centers reach 98% of all continental U.S. households within a two-day delivery window.
WuXi Biologics, a leading global open-access biologics technology platform company offering end-to-end solutions for biologics discovery, development and manufacturing, announced that it is to invest S$80 million (equivalent to approximately USD$60 million) and hire approximately 150 employees to establish a state-of-the-art biologics manufacturing facility in Singapore. It will be the 10th global drug substance manufacturing facility of WuXi Biologics (MFG10).
Headquartered in Wuxi city, Jiangsu province, China, WuXi Biologics is a leading global platform company providing end-to-end solutions for biologics with a mission to accelerate and transform biologics discovery, development and manufacturing to benefit patients around the world.
This state-of-the-art “facility of the future” will be built upon the novel approach WuXi Biologics has pioneered deploying single-use bioreactors. It is also designed to be able to run continuous bioprocessing, a next generation manufacturing technology to be first implemented in Asia outside of China. A total of approximately 4,500 L bioreactor capacity will be installed with two 2,000 L traditional fed-batch and one 500 L perfusion based continuous processing. This facility will be able to handle both clinical and small volume commercial production. An early-stage bioprocess development lab will also be included.
WuXi Biologics to establish a Biologics Manufacturing facility in Singapore
Hyatt plans for first Hyatt Centric Hotel in Ireland
Hyatt Hotel Corporation announced plans for the first Hyatt property in Ireland, Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin. A Hyatt affiliate has entered into a franchise agreement for a Hyatt Centric hotel in Dublin with Realmside Ltd, an affiliate of Hodson Bay Group, an Irish hotel and property group owned by the O’Sullivan family. The 234-room hotel will be managed by Hodson Bay Group Management Ltd and is expected to open in May 2019.
The hotel will be situated in The Liberties, a historic and vibrant area in the heart of Dublin that has undergone significant revitalization in recent years. Enabling guests to discover everything Dublin has to offer, the hotel will be within easy walking distance to Dublin’s major attractions including the historic St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin Castle and Vicar Street—the city’s premier live music venue. For eager-to-explore, millennial-minded business and leisure guests, Hyatt Centric The Liberties Dublin will also be in close proximity to exciting destinations such as the home of Guinness and St James’s Gate brewery.
Hyatt Centric MG Road Bangalore opens as the first Hyatt Centric Hotel in India
Hyatt Hotels Corporation announced the rebranding of Hyatt Bangalore MG Road to the Hyatt Centric brand, marking the brand’s first hotel in India and twenty-third worldwide. Located in prime destinations across world-class cities like New York, Miami, Madrid, Tokyo and Chicago, the Hyatt Centric brand is thoughtfully designed to enable exploration and discovery, and targets millennial-minded travelers who want to be in the middle of the action.
Located in the city known as India’s Silicon Valley, Hyatt Centric MG Road Bangalore is the launch pad that inspires and encourages exploration of Bangalore’s serene parks, inspiring Victorian-era architecture, and vibrant dining scene with ease.
Designed by Studio HBA, the hotel boasts a contemporary feel with eclectic touches that capture the city’s cosmopolitan vibe. Its 143 contemporary and playful guestrooms, including four suites with terrace gardens overlooking the aquamarine blue pool, have been stylishly redecorated and infused with local flare. With features like complimentary Wi-Fi and a 48-inch flat-screen TV, each guestroom offers the perfect setting to relax after the day’s adventures.
Hampton by Hilton will open its first hotel in Spain
Hilton has signed a franchise agreement with Project HbH Alcobendas SL to open the first Hampton by Hilton hotel in Spain, in the town of Alcobendas (Madrid), which will be managed by PANORAM HOTEL MANAGEMENT.
The 138-room hotel, scheduled to open in June 2019, will be conveniently located nine kilometers from the Madrid airport, in a perfect location for business and leisure travelers, and will feature an outdoor pool, gym and several meeting rooms.
Patrick Fitzgibbon, Hilton's senior vice president of development for EMEA explains: "Hampton by Hilton is our fastest-growing brand, with nearly 70 operating hotels and 70 more in development. Tourism in Spain is also at a great moment. It overtook the US as the second most visited country in the world, receiving 82 million tourists last year. It's an excellent time to introduce Hampton by Hilton in Spain.
IHG expands in Thailand with eight new properties
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group), one of the world’s leading hotel companies, in partnership with Ratanakorn Asset, has announced the momentous signing of eight new properties in Thailand’s key resort destinations of Pattaya, Rayong, Phuket, Khao Lak and Koh Samui. The multi-brand signing, consisting of new-builds and a conversion across the Holiday Inn®, Holiday Inn Express® and Staybridge Suites brands, will add more than 2,000 rooms and ramp up IHG’s presence in the country, which already boasts the group’s largest system size in the region. The hotels are set to open from this year to 2027.
Clarence Tan, Managing Director South East Asia and Korea, IHG, commented: “As a top travel destination for business and leisure alike, Thailand has always been an important market for us, serving as the regional launch pad for some of our key brands including Holiday Inn Express, Hotel Indigo and Staybridge Suites. Together with our partner, Ratanakorn Asset, we are excited to strengthen our presence here with three of our most recognised and well-loved brands. Following the inaugural signing of Staybridge Suites in Bangkok last December, these latest additions will build on our growth momentum in the country and in our resort portfolio - a testament to our steadfast commitment to provide our guests with world-class accommodation, in some of the world’s best resort locations.”
Radisson Hospitality AB, publicly listed on Nasdaq Stockholm, Sweden and part of Radisson Hotel Group, is adding a new territory to its expanding portfolio with the signing of Park Inn by Radisson Lusaka Longacres in Zambia. Radisson Hotel Group’s Africa portfolio consists of 83 hotels and more than 17,500 rooms in operation and under development.
Located in the Longacres suburb of Lusaka, the hotel will be situated in a prime location within the city’s concentration of embassies, diplomatic missions and United Nations (UN) offices. It will form part of a mixed-use development, including a 9000m2 shopping mall, which – along with an increasing number of businesses – will support the hotel in establishing itself as a destination in Lusaka.
Park Inn by Radisson hotel signed in Lusaka, Zambia
Hilton signs Tapestry Collection’s first hotels outside the U.S.A
Hilton announced the signing of two Tapestry Collection by Hilton agreements in Lima, Peru: Hotel Bel’Arte Lima and Hotel Museo de Osma – representing the first international properties for Hilton's 14th brand created for travelers looking for a unique, upscale hotel experience. These new deals form part of Hilton’s development pipeline of eight hotels in Peru, with plans to add more than 1,000 rooms in key markets throughout the country.
“As Hilton continues expanding in Latin America, our team has strategically focused on pursuing opportunities in Peru, one of the region’s fastest growing economies in the past decade,” said Juan Corvinos, vice president, development, Latin America and the Caribbean, Hilton. “With six hotels and more than 850 existing guest rooms in our Peru portfolio, we look forward to further solidifying our presence with milestone projects, including brand debuts in Lima and throughout the country in destinations such as Arequipa and Tarapoto.”
Slated to open in 2021, the 117-room Hotel Bel’Arte Lima, Tapestry Collection by Hilton will be situated in the financial district of San Isidro in Peru’s capital. Catering to business and leisure travelers, the one-of-a-kind hotel will feature an art gallery within the property.
The Government of Korea and the African Development Bank have issued a Joint Declaration following the conclusion of the Ministerial Roundtable of the Korea-Africa Economic Cooperation (KOAFEC) Conference taking place during the African Development Bank’s 53rd Annual Meetings in which Korea announced a $5-billion bilateral financial assistance package for Africa.
The Ministerial Roundtable is the signature event of the biennial KOAFEC Conference, gathering a peer group of African Ministers of Finance who also serve as the African Development Bank Board of Governors to discuss topical issues and a pan-African approach to engagement with Korea. Taking place under the theme “Africa and the 4th Industrial Revolution:
The $5-billion financial assistance package will be delivered over two years through partnerships with various development agencies, including but not limited to the African Development Bank Group. The package leverages resources from various Korean bilateral agencies and platforms, including the Knowledge Sharing Program, the Economic Development Cooperation Fund, Korea Import-Export Bank, among others. Specifically, African Development Bank President Akinwumi Adesina and the Deputy Prime Minister of Korea, Dong Yeon Kim, signed three cooperation agreements for the implementation of certain components of the $5-billion package by the Bank Group.
Korea announces $5 billion financial package for Africa
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and Mars Food and Battambang Rice Investment Co., Ltd (BRICo), launched a partnership to promote sustainable development of Cambodia’s rice industry. Improving rice production and enhancing linkages with the global rice value chain will help Cambodia’s agri-sector expand market access, increase export value, and improve farmers’ livelihoods.
Rice is Cambodia’s most important produce, engaging 80 percent of farmers. Cambodia’s rice exports have grown tenfold since 2010, thanks to raised industry standards, improved efficiency of rice millers and re-processors, and streamlining of export procedures, among others. However, the sector has scopes to further increase the rice export value by improving rice yield and quality, adopting sustainable farming and processing practices, and enhancing value chain linkages. In addition, with climate change threats, there is an urgent need to shift to a more sustainable way of growing rice.
IFC and Mars Food, owner of the world’s largest rice brand UNCLE BEN’S®, along with its local rice supplier Battambang Rice Investment Co., Ltd (BRICo) — a rice mill from Cambodia’s rice bowl of Battambang — kick-started the advisory project today. By helping farmers conform to agricultural standards and practices developed by the Sustainable Rice Platform (SRP) and improving famers’ adoption of technology and climate smart agriculture practices, the project is expected to result in a 20 percent increase in yield and a 25 percent increase in income by 2025. Over the next three years, about 9,000 smallholder farmers will benefit from exposure to sustainable farming practices, climate smart agriculture technologies and financial literacy training disseminated by the project.
IFC Partners with Mars Food to promotes Sustainable Rice Production in Cambodia
A new study from Juniper Research has found that increasing smart security adoption will drive home automation and monitoring revenues from an estimated $12 billion in 2018 to over $45 billion by 2023, representing a growth of over 260%.
The research found that smart security is a driving force behind this market growth, with manufacturers such as Nest, Hive and Netgear producing compelling mass market products. This move is reinforced by the heavy focus by big players on smart entry solutions, as evidenced by Amazon’s acquisition of Ring.
For more insights, download the free whitepaper: Who is Winning the Race to Smart Home Automation.
The new research, Smart Homes: Vendor Analysis, Impact Assessments & Strategic Opportunities 2018-2023,established that major vendors are concentrating on building out their ecosystems, with corporate partnerships and acquisitions being primary tools. Juniper predicted that open ecosystems will rapidly accelerate growth, reaching 1 billion automation and monitoring devices by 2023, up from 176 million in 2018, leading to benefits for both consumers and vendors.
Automation service market to grow 260% by 2023
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it & BPM i FOOD I HEALTHCARE i TEXTILES i INFRASTRUCTURE i ENGINEERING i tourism
21 - 26 May 2018