News

Leonia/Sampo merger

Premium 01 December 2000

Finnish bank Leonia and insurer Sampo have merged to create a national champion in the bancassurance sector. Following the merger, 57 per cent of shares are now held by Sampo shareholders and 43 per cent by the Finnish government.

Japan's Fair Trade Commission halt incinerator bid-rigging

Premium 01 December 2000

Japan’s Fair Trade Commission has ordered five leading incinerator companies to stop their practices of bid-rigging on orders from local governments. The JFTC alleges that the five companies, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd, NKK Corp, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Hitachi Zosen Corp and Takuma Co rigged bids on contracts for stoker incinerators ordered by local governments between 1994 and 1998.

SAB buys Czech Brewer

Premium 01 December 2000

South African Breweries, which controls 98 per cent of the South African Beer market, is to acquire the Czech Republic’s largest brewer, Pilsner Urquell, for US$629, creating the world’s third largest breweries group.

Austrian bank cartel

Premium 01 December 2000

Eight Austrian banks which collectively account for over half of Austrian deposits and lending have been accused by the European Commission of jointly setting interest rates and commission fees.

AT&T and Dobson to buy American Cellular

Premium 01 December 2000

AT&T Wireless has launched a joint venture with US rural telephone company Dobson Communications corporation to buy American Cellular Corporation for US$2.3 billion.

ASDA complaint against mobile phone operators

Premium 01 December 2000

ASDA Stores Ltd has made a formal complaint to OFTEL concerning three mobile phone operators, BT Cellnet, Vodphone and Orange, over proposed increases in the wholesale price of prepay packages.

United Biscuits sells frozen food business to Heinz

Premium 01 December 2000

United Biscuits has sold its £190 million frozen and chilled foods business to Heinz. The decision marks a drive by United to return to its core biscuits and snack food businesses initiated by chief executive Leslie van de Walle, who took over the company in May. Meanwhile, Heinz is trying to expand its share of the frozen foods industry, which is currently worth about £603 million in the UK.

Ashlands/Superfos

Premium 01 November 2000

Ashlands Inc, a US energy, construction and chemical conglomerate, has launched a bid to acquire Danish construction company Superfos A/S.

Ashton/Rio Tinto/De Beers

Premium 01 November 2000

Ashton Mining Ltd is considering two multi-million dollar acquisition proposals by rival mine industry giants.

AOL and Time Warner's $117.8 billion merger received regulatory clearance from the EC on 11th October 2000

Premium 01 November 2000

In April 2000 PepsiCo filed a complaint with the Mexican Federal Competition Commission accusing Coca-Cola of abusing its dominant position in Mexico.