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Market Update

Friends Divests Lombard Unit, Imperial Tobacco to Acquire Reynolds Assets


Author: Nigel Thomas
ticker.com
Last Update: 11:53 AM ET July 11 2014

4:00 PM Frankfurt Aker Solutions prepared to split into two and write down 1.6 billion kroner of assets. Friends Life divests its Lombard unit to Blackstone. Imperial Tobacco is in asset purchase talk with the U.S.-based Reynolds American and Lorillard. Whirlpool acquired a majority stake in Italy based Indesit.

In London trading, FTSE 100 index slid 0.1% or 6.03 to 6,666.34 and in Frankfurt the DAX index fell 0.4% or 35.29 to 9,623.84.

In Paris, CAC 40 index inched up 0.02% or 0.95 to 4,302.21.

Aker Solutions slipped 1.6% to 93.60 kronor after the Norway-based oil and gas services provider prepared to split the company by September.

The board determined to write down 1.6 billion kroner or $260 million of assets in the Aker Oilfield Services unit of Akastor, one of two companies that will emerge from the separation.

Friends Life Group Ltd gained 1.9% to 326.28 pence after the U.K.-based financial services provider divested its Lombard unit to Blackstone Group for 317 million or $532 million. The proceeds will be used to buy-back shares.

The deal, expected to be completed in the second-half of this year.

Imperial Tobacco Group Plc jumped 2.1% to 2,714.07 pence after the U.K.-based tobacco producer confirmed that it is in talk with the U.S.-based Reynolds American Inc. and Lorillard, Inc. to potentially buy some assets.

Indesit Company SpA increased 2.9% to 39.53 after the Italy-based household appliances maker agreed to sell its majority stake to the U.S.-based home appliances maker Whirlpool Corporation for 758 million or $1.04 billion.

Symrise AG rose 0.9% to 39.53 on speculation that Japan''s Ajinomoto Co may be interested to acquire the Germany-based fragrances and flavors maker, after it lost offer bids for Wild Flavors and Diana.

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Sources: Data collected by 123jump.com and Ticker.com from company press releases, filings and corporate websites. Market data: BATS Exchange. Inc