(Adds COFCO Corp, Procaps S.A.S., Azimut Holding , Cassa Centrale Banca, Robinhood, Roche; updates Rogers Communications, ODP Corp)
March 15 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Monday:
** Chinese food group COFCO Corp has hired banks to advise on a plan to merge trading arm COFCO International with some domestic businesses before a listing of shares in the new entity, Bloomberg reported, citing sources. Colombian softgel maker Procaps S.A.S. is in talks to go public on Nasdaq through a merger with U.S. blank-check company Union Acquisition Corp II LATN.O in a deal which would value it at more than $1 billion, people familiar with the matter said. Azimut Holding AZMT.MI signed an agreement to buy a controlling stake in Mexico's independent asset manager and advisory firm KAAN as the Italian group seeks to strengthens its presence in the Latin American country. Italy's Cassa Centrale Banca (CCB) is reconsidering the terms at which it could take a controlling stake in rival Carige CRGI.MI in light of mounting losses at the Genoa-based bank, three sources close to the matter said. Robinhood said it would buy recruiting firm Binc for an undisclosed sum, adding more than 80 employees to help the U.S. online brokerage recruit talent. Roche ROG.S is filling a testing portfolio gap by buying U.S.-based GenMark Diagnostics GNMK.O in a $1.8 billion deal that the Swiss pharmaceuticals manufacturer said taps one of the fastest-growing diagnostics areas. New Zealand's Tilt Renewables Ltd TLT.NZ said it would be acquired by a consortium including its second-largest shareholder and Australia's AGL Energy Ltd AGL.AX for NZ$2.94 billion ($2.10 billion), sending its shares to an all-time high. Private equity firm Warburg Pincus has agreed to acquire a minority stake in Edelman Financial Engines, valuing the U.S. investment advisory services provider at $7.3 billion, including debt, the companies told Reuters. Australian pension funds QSuper and Sunsuper said they would merge, forming the country's largest single manager of retirement savings as regulatory pressure drives consolidation in the industry. Roche ROG.S will buy GenMark Diagnostics GNMK.O , a U.S.-based maker of molecular diagnostic tests in a $1.8 billion deal, the Swiss pharmaceuticals manufacturer said. Dubai state developer Nakheel is considering the sale of its district cooling assets, three sources familiar with the matter told Reuters, as real estate companies in the United Arab Emirates offload non-core activities amid the coronavirus downturn. Polish parcel locker firm InPost INPST.AS said it was proposing to buy French parcel delivery platform Mondial Relay for about 565 million euros ($673.88 million) in cash as it looks to expand its international presence amid a booming e-commerce market. South African budget retailer Mr Price Group MRPJ.J said it would buy privately owned kitchenware company Yuppiechef in a cash deal to bolster its online presence and premium offerings. Enel ENEI.MI said it had launched a voluntary tender offer to buy up to 10% of shares of its Chilean-listed unit Enel Americas ENELAM.SN as part of its effort to reorganise its non-conventional renewable energy business in Latin America. Chinese search giant Baidu Inc BIDU.O said that its artificial intelligence chip unit Kunlun recently completed a round of fundraising, which according to one source with direct knowledge of the matter values the business at about $2 billion. Italy's biggest construction group Webuild WBD.MI will acquire the remaining 34% of Astaldi AST.MI to complete their merger by July and spin-off Astaldi's debt into a separate unit by then, the two companies said. Poland's InPost INPST.AS aims to more double the size of its operations with a 565 million euro ($674 million) cash deal to buy French delivery platform Mondial Relay as it looks to expand its international presence amid a booming e-commerce market. Nippon Life Insurance NPNLI.UL is set to sell 30% of its holdings in Japanese regional banks during the fiscal year starting in April, the Jiji News Service reported. Blackstone (NYSE: BX ) Group BX.N and Starwood Capital Group agreed to buy hotel operator Extended Stay America STAY.O for $6 billion, the companies said. Brazilian listed medical services firm Diagnósticos da América SA DASA3.SA , known as DASA, said that the board of the company has approved a proposed acquisition of two rival medical companies. Swedish lithium-ion battery maker Northvolt said it had received an order worth more than $14 billion over 10 years from Germany's Volkswagen VOWG_p.DE . Rogers Communications Inc RCIb.TO said it was buying Shaw Communications Inc SJRb.TO for about C$20 billion ($16.02 billion) in a deal that would create Canada's second-largest cellular and cable operator but might attract stiff regulatory scrutiny. ODP Corp ODP.O said it had rejected a proposal from Staples to acquire some assets of the Office Depot and OfficeMax owner, adding that the offer lacked basic deal terms including a purchase price.
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