News

Autonomous driving start-up Aurora plans to go public through SPAC deal with initial value of $11 billion

Aurora, a self-driving firm, is going public by merging with a special purpose acquisition firm in a deal that values it at $13 billion, a premium to rivals. One day, the firm thinks it can transform transportation, and maybe it can. But what it’s worth depends on when the market for autonomous vehicles arrives – a risk for its many peers too.

Several self-driving firms are going public or already have, giving credibility to the idea that autonomous vehicles will go mainstream. Embark Trucks, which makes software to use on multiple trucks is valued at 1.6 times 2025 revenue, while TuSimple (TSP.O), which is already public, is valued at 5 times the same year. Aurora’s merger with Reinvent Technology Partners Y (RTPY.O) values it at over 80 times 2025 revenue, and a more reasonable 5 times projected 2027 revenue.

Of all of them, Aurora talks a good game. Its executives include the ...

July 19, 2021


Aleph Farms Launches 'Aleph Zero' Program to Grow Steaks in Space

Aleph Farms, Ltd., the leader in growing quality steaks directly from non-GMO cells, isolated from a living animal – is taking a bold new step toward accelerating extraterrestrial food production, which has been a main barrier for long-term space missions. The company announces the launch of its 'Aleph Zero' program. This project will forward its vision for advancing food security by producing fresh quality meat anywhere, independent of climate change and of availability of local natural resources.

The core mission of the new initiative is centered on introducing new capabilities for locally producing fresh, quality meat even in the most harsh and remote extraterrestrial environments, such as space.

To the achieve this goal, Aleph Farms is securing strategic partnerships with technology companies and space agencies for long term collaborative research and development contracts that will ensure the integration of Aleph Farms' innovations into leading space programs. These programs will leverage the company's ...

July 14, 2021


Philip Morris International acquires Fertin Pharma / Day for $ 820 million

The acquisition will strengthen our company’s transformation process toward the introduction of innovative smokeless products that will replace traditional cigarettes and tobacco products in the foreseeable future, as well as improve our smokeless product portfolio and progress in nicotine-free product development, “said Jacek Olchak, PMI CEO.

Fertin Pharma, which employs 850 people in Denmark, Canada and India, manufactures pharmaceutical chewing gum with nicotine, as well as other pharmaceuticals that help to quit smoking. In 2020 Fertin Pharma net revenue was DKK 1.1 billion (approximately USD 160 million). The transaction value is approximately 15 times greater than Fertin Pharma 2020 EBITDA.

Now Fertin Pharma is owned by the global investment organization EQT and Bagger-Sørensen & Co. In the statement Philip Morris International notes that the transaction will be funded from accrued funds and is expected to be concluded in the fourth quarter of this year, subject to the approval of the relevant regulators. ...

July 9, 2021


Qatar Petroleum grabs $12.5 bln in emerging market bonds record

Qatar Petroleum (QP), one of the world's top liquefied natural gas (LNG) suppliers, sold $12.5 billion in a jumbo four-tranche bond deal on Wednesday, a document showed, its first public bond sale and the biggest issuance out of emerging markets this year.

QP sold $1.5 billion in a five-year portion at 50bps over U.S. Treasuries (UST), $3.5 billion in 10-year paper at 90 bps over UST, $3.5 billion in 20-year notes at 3.15% and $4 billion in 30-year Formosa bonds at 3.3%.

The bonds landed roughly 10-15 bps wider than the sovereign's curve, which investors likened to Saudi oil giant Aramco's debt compared with Saudi sovereign debt.

QP, which supplies one in five LNG cargoes globally, will use the proceeds for operational and investment purposes, including for its North Field expansion project, the bonds' prospectus said.

QP signed a contract in February for the first phase of its North Field LNG expansion project, which ...

July 5, 2021


New investment to accelerate commercialization of geothermal

With a strong oil and gas sector base, the State of Texas is clearly seeing some exciting development related to a pivot from oil and gas to geothermal energy. This is demonstrated by several interesting new start ups entering the geothermal space, such as Sage Geosystems Inc. (Sage). Earlier this year, we reported on the company’s planned project to utilise a closed-loop system to derive geothermal energy near a military installation in Texas. The company is working on efforts that would adapt current drilling techniques and equipment to access heat in sedimentary formations around the world.

Now the company, together with Nabors Industries (Nabors), and Virya, LLC (Virya) announce the signing of a $12 million financing led by Nabors. Nabors and Virya will invest $10 million and $2 million, respectively.

Nabors is a leading provider of advanced technology for the global energy industry, including advanced drilling automation capabilities, directional drilling services, and ...

June 30, 2021


Raven Industries Soars on $2.1 Billion CNH Industrial Deal

Get Report shares soared on Monday, climbing nearly 50%, after CNH Industrial  (CNHI) - Get Report said it has struck a deal to buy the agricultural equipment maker in a tie-up valued at $2.1 billion.

CNH will pay $58 a share for Sioux Falls, South Dakota-based Raven, a 33.6% premium to Raven’s four-week volume-weighted average stock price, giving it an enterprise value of $2.1 billion, the companies said Monday.

Owned by the billionaire Agnelli family, London-based CNH said the deal will allow it to beef up its agricultural business with precision-technology tools as the Italian-American construction equipment maker prepares to spin off its truck, bus and engine operations.

CNH said it expects $400 million of revenue synergies from the deal by 2025 and to add $150 million of earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization. The Agnelli family’s Exor NV controls CNH with 42.5% of voting rights.

CNH announced plans in 2019 to split ...

June 25, 2021


JPMorgan Buys Digital Wealth Firm Nutmeg for U.K. Expansion

JPMorgan Chase & Co. agreed to buy U.K. digital wealth manager Nutmeg Saving and Investment as it seeks to expand its mobile banking service for retail investors in the country.

Nutmeg has more than 140,000 customers and manages over 3.5 billion pounds ($4.9 billion) of assets, according to a statement from the U.S. bank Thursday. JPMorgan’s digital bank Chase will be launched in the U.K. later this year, it said.

The deal values Nutmeg at close to 700 million pounds, according to people familiar with the matter. The U.S. bank didn’t disclose how much it paid.

The U.K. digital move has been planned for more than two years as part of a closely-guarded project. The biggest U.S. bank gets almost 50% of its revenue from a consumer business that has operated only in the U.S., though the firm has long deliberated whether to bring its offerings to the rest of the world. 


Vertical Aerospace to go public in $2.2 billion SPAC deal

Vertical Aerospace, an electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft (eVTOL) maker backed by investors such as American Airlines (AAL.O), will go public through a merger with a blank-check firm in a deal valued at $2.2 billion.

Vertical Aerospace said it has pre-orders for up to 1,000 eVTOL aircraft with launch customers Avolon and American Airlines, along with a pre-order option from Virgin Atlantic, all valued at up to $4 billion.

Investment in the zero-emission electric aircraft comes at a time when aviation companies are under mounting pressure from investors to help decarbonize the sector and boost their environmental, social and governance (ESG) scores.

Analysts say a key question is how long it will take for the new electric aircraft to be certified by aviation authorities.

Europe's top regulator said last month the region could see the first flying taxis enter service as early as 2024. (https://reut.rs/3cyehAh)

Vertical will be listed on the New York Stock ...

June 16, 2021


Saudi Aramco raises $6 billion with debut sukuk

Saudi Aramco has hired a large group of banks to arrange its inaugural issuance of U.S. dollar-denominated sukuk, a document showed on Monday, as it seeks cash to fulfil large commitments to its major shareholder, the Saudi government.

The banks will arrange fixed income investor calls starting on Monday, the document from one of the banks showed. An issuance of sukuk in three-, five- and 10-year tranches will follow, subject to market conditions.

The active bookrunners on the deal are Alinma Invest (1150.SE), Al Rajhi Capital (1120.SE), BNP Paribas (BNPP.PA), Citi (C.N), First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB.AD), Goldman Sachs International (GS.N), HSBC (HSBA.L), JPMorgan (JPM.N), Morgan Stanley (MS.N), NCB Capital (1180.SE), Riyad Capital (1010.SE), SMBC Nikko (8316.T) and Standard Chartered Bank (STAN.L).

Aramco last year maintained a promised $75 billion dividend despite lower oil prices, and is expected to shoulder significant domestic investments that form part of Saudi Arabia's plans to transform the ...

June 11, 2021


Sony to spend $18.39 billion on strategic investments over next 3 years, including subscription push

Sony Group said on Wednesday it will spend 2 trillion yen ($18.39 billion) over the next three years on strategic investments, including a push to expand subscribers to its gaming and entertainment services.

Sony said in a statement it would accelerate investments in mobile and online services with the aim of expanding the number of consumers directly connected to its services to 1 billion people from 160 million.

As it streamlines its consumer electronic business, Sony is focusing more on movies, games and other content it sells through platforms such as its PlayStation games console.

The company is benefiting from strong demand for its PlayStation 5 launched in core markets in November. A global shortage of chips, however, means Sony is unable to keep up with demand for the games console, which it wants to use to encourage online game downloads and sign-ups for subscription services.

In the business year that started April 1, ...

June 7, 2021