Rockwell Collins Could Be Sold for $145 a share

Rockwell Collins could be acquired for $145 per share

 

Rockwell Collins Could Be Sold for $145 a share. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar

After Reuters and Bloomberg reported that United Technologies (UTX) had made an unconfirmed bid to buy Rockwell Collins (COL), RBC Capital analyst Matthew McConnell estimates that Rockwell Collins could be acquired for $145 per share.

Shares of the maker of avionics and cabin interiors spiked in late trading on Friday after Bloomberg News reported United Technologies Corp. was considering buying the $19 billion company. The idea of a Rockwell Collins purchase isn’t new. Last year, Starboard Value reportedly pushed management to pursue a sale rather than proceed with a takeover of airplane seat-maker B/E Aerospace (that deal closed in April). But it’s jarring to see United Technologies thinking seriously about it.

The analyst says that the deal would strengthen United Technologies and has “ample strategic rationale,” although he notes that airplane makers have expressed opposition to similar deals in the past.

He adds that the deal “would move” United Technologies “up the technology curve” and enable it to enter the avionics business which he says has high barriers of entry.

#McConnell thinks that there is a 50% chance of a deal taking place and raised his price target on Rockwell Collins to $133 from $120. He keeps a Sector Perform rating on Rockwell Collins.

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Wells Fargo’s Legal Expenses Soar

Wells Fargo raises view of possible legal losses above reserves to $3.3B

Wells Fargo to close 450 branches. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar for the story.

In a regulatory filing, Wells Fargo (WFC) noted that the company establishes accruals for legal actions when potential losses associated with the actions become probable and the costs can be reasonably estimated.

The high end of the range of reasonably possible potential losses in excess of the company’s accrual for probable and estimable losses was approximately $3.3B as of June 30.

“The increase in the high end of the range from March 31, 2017 was due to a variety of matters, including the company’s existing mortgage related regulatory investigations…

We expanded the time periods of this review to cover the entire consent order period of January 2011 through September 2016, and to perform a voluntary review of accounts from 2009 to 2010. We expect to complete this expanded review process and commence remaining remediation for these additional periods by the end of third quarter 2017.

As part of this expanded review process, we also expect to complete the review and validation of the number of potentially unauthorized accounts previously identified by the third-party consulting firm, including refinements to the practices and methodologies previously used to determine such number and to remediate sales practices related matters.

We expect that our review of the expanded time periods, which adds over three years to the initial review period of approximately four years, May 2011 to mid-2015, and our review and validation efforts for the initial review period, may lead to a significant increase in the identified number of potentially unauthorized accounts.

However, we do not expect any incremental customer remediation costs as a result of these efforts to have a significant financial impact on the company,” the company stated in it filing.

WFC closed at $52.84. Stock has a 52-week trading range of $43.55 – $59.99.

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Barron’s is Bullish on Oil, Bearish on Tesla

Barron’s, the weekly publication owned by the Wall Street Journal, in its latest issue features several names. They include:

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BULLISH MENTIONS

Large-cap energy companies in better shape to raise dividends – With oil prices close to $50 a barrel, large-cap energy companies are in better shape to maintain or even raise their dividends than they were a few years ago, when prices collapsed, Lawrence Strauss writes in this week’s edition of Barron’s. Oneok (OKE), Valero Energy (VLO), Exxon Mobil (XOM), Phillips 66 (PSX), Marathon Petroleum (MPC) and ConocoPhillips (COP) expected to boost their payouts above 2016 levels this year, the publication said.

Delta Air Lines could rise 35% in two years. At $50, Delta’s (DAL) shares trade at about nine times estimated 2017 earnings, which is “inexpensive” for a company looking to post double-digit earnings growth in the coming years, Andrew Bary writes in this week’s edition of Barron’s. The shares could rise 35% in the next two years, Bary notes, adding that a 50% dividend hike in September will lift the yield to 2.4%.

Finisar seen as the ‘most attractive’ Apple iPhone supplier – With the next Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone expected this fall, Wall Street is starting to speculate on the winners, with CEVA (CEVA) joining Cirrus Logic (CRUS) and Skyworks Solutions (SWKS), Tiernan Ray writes in this week’s edition of Barron’s. Among the most talked-about aspects of the next iPhone is augmented reality, Ray notes, adding that possible beneficiaries include Finisar (FNSR), Lumentum Holdings (LITE), II-VI (IIVI), and Viavi Solutions (VIAV). Finisar shares surged in June when it announced quarterly results that included an order for “3-D sensing,” a code name for augmented reality, Barron’s points out.

Southern ‘a good bet’ for investors willing to take on more risk – This year has not been kind to Southern Company (SO) shares, but after Scana’s (SCG) news that it would abandon its plan to build two nuclear reactors in South Carolina, Southern could be a “good bet” for investors willing to take on a little more risk, Ben Levisohn writes in this week’s edition of Barron’s. Southern could decide to abandon the two plants it has under construction in Georgia, something that would likely be rewarded by the market, #Levisohn adds.

Voya Financial could be worth 30% more – Voya Financial (VOYA) shares have fallen over 13% in the past two years, with Wall Street penalizing the company for a “troubled” legacy variable-annuity business that had made some of the most generous benefit guarantees in the industry, Reshma Kapadia writes in this week’s edition of Barron’s. However, there are indications that Voya’s core retirement and investment business is growing, and that management is taking the right steps to reduce risk, Kapadia argues, adding that Voya could be worth at least 30% more than its current market value in the next year.

BEARISH MENTIONS

Slower growth in China could prompt retreat in Copper prices, Barron’s says – Copper is enjoying its biggest rally in months, boosted by increased confidence about global growth and a weaker U.S. dollar., Ira Iosebashvili writes in this week’s edition of Barron’s. However, some market participants urge caution, warning that the ground may shift under investors’ feet in the second half of the year, with many concerned about China, Iosebashvili adds. Publicly traded companies in the space include Freeport McMoRan (FCX), BHP Billiton (BHP), Rio Tinto (RIO), Anglo American (NGLOY), Southern Copper (SCCO), and Vale (VALE).

Chipotle (CMG) shares should be avoided, since food-safety
problems might be structural and not coincidental.

Buy Tesla car, not stock – In a follow-up story, Barron’s writes that Tesla (TSLA) shares have outrun most analysts’ reasoned cases for buying the stock. While initial reviews of the Model 3 are glowing, and Tesla reports a remarkable 450,000 in pre-orders, the company’s stock price leaves little on the table, the publication adds.

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United Therapeutics Is For Sale!

United Therapeutics rises on reports multiple buyers in pursuit

United Therapeutics Is For Sale! See Stockwinners.com Market Radar for details.

Shares of United Therapeutics (UTHR) are up following a report that multiple suitors are considering bids to purchase the biotech company.

WHAT’S NEW

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) may be joining Gilead (GILD) and Novartis (NVS) in the race to buy United Therapeutics, which develops pulmonary arterial hypertension treatments, The Evening Standard reported.

Glaxo, which is thought to be being advised by Lazard and Citi, would face “stiff competition,” according to the report, as Gilead is thought to be the frontrunner.

Emma Walmsley, who became Glaxo’s CEO in April, said she is seeking smaller acquisitions of United’s size, but the company has also suggested it is looking to shift out of rare diseases. United could fetch up to $200 per share, or about $8.7B in total, the report said.

PRICE ACTION

United Therapeutics (UTHR) are up 7.6% to $136.68 in Friday afternoon trading.

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Impinj Plunges on Guidance

Tracking tag firm Impinj implodes after guidance, large customers delays

 Impinj implodes after guidance, large customers delays. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar

Shares of RFID solutions provider Impinj (PI) nose dived after reporting quarterly earnings and guidance for the current quarter.

Following the earnings report, research firm Canaccord lowered its price target. The company describes itself as a leading provider of RAIN RFID solutions.

RAIN RFID is a wireless technology that connects billions of everyday items to the internet, enabling businesses and consumers to identify, locate, authenticate, and engage each item.

The Impinj platform is made up of both hardware and software and uses RAIN RFID to wirelessly connect everyday items to the internet, delivering digital life to the physical world.

The company provides solutions to a broad base of industries including retail, healthcare, and logistics. “Impinj is helping companies around the world increase sales, improve efficiencies, and deliver compelling experiences.”

#Impinj went public on July 21 of 2016 and saw its shares rise about 28% on its first day of trading.

EARNINGS

Impinj reported second quarter financial results after the close of trading on Thursday evening. Q2 results were better than analyst expectations beating on both the top and bottom lines.

For Q2 the #RFID maker reported earnings per share of 6c on revenue of $34.1M. Analysts were modeling 2c for EPS on revenue of $33.51M. The problem with the report was in its tepid current quarter financial guidance and less robust product view for the year. The analyst provided Q3 guidance that was well shy of estimates.

The RFID tag maker is now guiding to an EPS loss for the current quarter of between (8c)-(1c) on lower revenue in a range of $31.75M-$33.25M. Analysts were predicting a profit of 8c on revenue of $37.75M. Founder and CEO Chris Diorio noted that the company will be adversely impacted by setbacks “in planned roll out expansions at several large end customers.”

The slowdown will result in fewer items being tagged with the company’s tracking chips. “We are revising our 2017 full-year endpoint IC estimated to be between 7B to 7.2Bunits,” said Diorio in a statement.

AMAZON DRIVER 

Late last year, shares of Impinj rallied after Amazon (AMZN) announced a new retail concept, Amazon Go.

Amazon said at the time that it is “a new kind of store with no check-out required… In fact, RAIN RFID can improve inventory visibility by more than 25%.”

Amazon expanded on its new store concept: “With our Just Walk Out Shopping experience, simply use the Amazon Go app to enter the store, take the products you want, and go! No lines, no checkout. Our checkout-free shopping experience is made possible by the same types of technologies used in self-driving cars: computer vision, sensor fusion, and deep learning.”

ANALYST VIEW

Adding to the selling in Impinj shares on Friday was a price target reduction out of #Canaccord.

Canaccord’s  Michael #Walkley lowered his price target on Impinj to $50 from $57 following Q2 results and lowered guidance.

The analyst noted delayed rollouts with a handful of customers in different verticals, including retail and healthcare, and said a single customer could represent several million endpoint IC’s. Management maintained its long-term guidance and Walkley said in the note that he expects re-accelerating revenue growth in 2018 and beyond.

As a result, Walkley maintained his Buy rating on Impinj shares.

PRICE ACTION

Shares of Impinj are near their day lows, trading down over 23% to $36.60 per share in Friday afternoon trading.

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Time Warner Name To Become History!

AT&T plans to drop Time Warner name after deal closes

Time Warner Name to Become History, See Stockwinners.com Market Radar

AT&T (T) is planning to drop the Time Warner (TWX) name after the proposed $85B takeover deal closes, The New York Post reports.

Additionally, sources say AT&T has approached potential candidates for a position that would sit above Time Warner units, including Turner, #HBO and Warner Bros., and would report to John Stankey, AT&T’s Entertainment chief; The company has hired Heidrick & Struggles (HSII) to conduct the search after media vet Peter Chernin said no to the role, sources say.

Time Warner CEO Jeff #Bewkes is expect to leave the company “as soon as the deal closes, — with a $95 million going-away prize” according to the report.

AT&T is expected to cut around two-thirds of the staff in the corporate unit, sources said. The company is also planning to create an ad tech platform across the company.

The deal is expected to be approved because AT&T and Time Warner don’t directly compete. But unlike past huge mergers such as Comcast’s purchase of NBCUniversal in 2013, this one is potentially trickier from an antitrust perspective.

That’s because AT&T has a nationwide footprint with its wireless and DirecTV satellite service, and could use that reach to demand higher fees from media companies and other cable and satellite firms.

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U.S. nonfarm payrolls rose 209k in July

U.S. nonfarm payrolls rose 209k in July with earnings rising 0.3%

U.S. ADP reported private payrolls increased 178k in July. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar to read more

U.S. nonfarm payrolls rose 209k in July with earnings rising 0.3%.

The June 222k job gain was revised up to 231k, but May’s 152k increase was bumped down to 145 (for a net +2k).

There was no revision to June’s 0.2% earnings rise.

The unemployment rate was dipped to 4.3% versus 4.4%. The labor force jumped 349k following the prior 361k gain, while household employment increased 345k from 245k.

The labor force participation rate rose to 62.9% from 62.8%. The workweek was steady at 34.5. Total private payrolls increased 205k (beating ADP’s 178k).

The goods producing sector added 22k workers, with construction up 6k, and manufacturing up 16k.

Jobs in the services sector increased 183k, with the 62k gain in leisure/hospitality leading the way. Education/healthcare gains were up 54k, while business services added 49k. Government jobs rose 4k, with the Federal sector unchanged.

This is another solid report and keeps the Fed on its normalization path, but doesn’t necessarily imply a September rate hike.

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Paysafe Sold for GBP2.96B

Blackstone, CVC Group to buy Paysafe for approximately GBP2.96B

Blackstone, CVC Group to buy Paysafe. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar to read more

The boards of Paysafe Group and Pi UK Bidco Limited, a newly-incorporated company jointly-owned by funds managed by Blackstone (BX) and funds managed and/or advised by CVC, announced that they have reached agreement on the terms of a recommended cash offer to be made by Bidco for the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of Paysafe.

It is intended that the Acquisition will be implemented by way of a Court-sanctioned scheme of arrangement.

Bidco reserves the right to elect, with the consent of the Takeover Panel and subject to the terms of the Bid Conduct Agreement, to implement the Acquisition by way of a Takeover Offer for the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of Paysafe as an alternative to the Scheme. Under the terms of the Acquisition, each Paysafe Shareholder will be entitled to receive: 590p in cash her Paysafe share.

The Acquisition values the entire issued and to be issued ordinary share capital of Paysafe at approximately GBP 2.96 billion.

The Paysafe Independent Directors, who have been so advised by Lazard as to the financial terms of the Acquisition, consider the terms of the Acquisition to be fair and reasonable.

In providing its advice to the Paysafe Independent Directors, #Lazard has taken into account the commercial assessments of the Paysafe Independent Directors. Commenting on the Acquisition, Martin Brand, Senior Managing Director of Blackstone, said: “We are delighted that our proposal has been recommended by the Board and excited by the prospect of working with management to develop Paysafe as one of the leading, global providers of online and mobile payment solutions.

Paysafe’s innovative alternative payment systems and risk management capabilities form a strong value proposition for consumers and merchants alike.

As a leading technology investor, #Blackstone believes that Paysafe is an ideal platform for continued innovation in the payments space, and look forward to supporting Paysafe’s growth both organically and through acquisitions.”

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Numerex Sold for $107 Million

Sierra Wireless to acquire Numerex for $5.35 a share

 Sierra Wireless to acquire Numerex for $5.35 a share. See Stockwinners.com to read more
Sierra Wireless (SWIR) and Numeric (NMRX) have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which Sierra Wireless will acquire Numerex in a stock-for-stock merger transaction.

The Transaction is valued at approximately $107M based on Sierra Wireless’ closing stock price on August 1, 2017 of $29.65 per share and represents a premium of 17.5% to Numerex’s 20-day average share price.

The acquisition expands Sierra Wireless’ position as a leading global IoT pure-play and will significantly increase its subscription-based recurring services revenue.

Under the terms of the Merger Agreement, Numerex shareholders will receive a fixed exchange ratio of 0.18 common shares of Sierra Wireless for each share of Numerex common stock.

Upon completion of the Transaction, Numerex will become a subsidiary of Sierra Wireless and Numerex shareholders will own approximately 10 percent of the common shares of Sierra Wireless on a fully diluted basis.

Concurrent with closing, Numerex’s debt of approximately $20 million including fees shall be repaid with Sierra Wireless cash.

The Transaction is expected to close in January 2018 subject to the receipt of Numerex shareholder approval and certain regulatory and government approvals, and satisfaction of other customary closing conditions.

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Jacobs Engineering to Buy Rival CH2M for $3.27 Billion

Jacobs Engineering to acquire CH2M in $3.27B transaction

 Jacobs Engineering to acquire CH2M in $3.27B transaction. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar to read more

Jacobs Engineering (JEC) and CH2M HILL Companies announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Jacobs will acquire all of the outstanding shares of CH2M in a cash and stock transaction with an enterprise value of approximately $3.27B, including approximately $416M of CH2M net debt.

Under the terms of the merger agreement, which has been unanimously approved by the Boards of Directors of both companies, CH2M’s stockholders will have the option to elect to receive either $88.08 in cash, 1.6693 shares of Jacobs common stock or a mix of $52.85 in cash and 0.6677 shares of Jacobs common stock subject to proration such that the aggregate consideration paid to CH2M stockholders will equal 60% cash and 40% Jacobs common stock.

Following the close of the transaction, CH2M stockholders will own 15% of Jacobs shares on a fully diluted basis based on the number of Jacobs shares outstanding. The transaction is not subject to a financing condition.

Jacobs expects to finance the $2.4B cash required for the transaction through a combination of cash on hand, borrowings under the Company’s existing revolving credit facility and $1.2B of new committed 3-year term debt arranged by BNP Paribas and The Bank of Nova Scotia.

Jacobs’ post-close liquidity is expected to remain robust at approximately $900M.

The transaction, which is expected to close in Jacobs’ fiscal 2018 first quarter, is subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals and approval by CH2M stockholders.

Apollo Global Management (APO), which has an approximate 18% voting interest in CH2M, has agreed to vote in favor of the transaction.

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PharMerica Sold for $1.4 Billion

PharMerica agrees to be acquired by KKR at $29.25 per share

PharMerica agrees to be acquired by KKR in deal valued at $1.4B. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar to read more.

PharMerica (PMC) announced that it has entered into a definitive merger agreement pursuant to which a newly formed company controlled by KKR (KKR), with Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) as a minority investor, will acquire PharMerica.

The all-cash transaction is valued at approximately $1.4B including the assumption or repayment of debt. Upon completion of the transaction, PharMerica will become a private company.

Under the terms of the agreement, PharMerica shareholders will receive $29.25 in cash for each share of PharMerica common stock upon closing of the proposed transaction.

The price represents a premium of approximately 17 percent to PharMerica’s closing share price as of the last trading day prior to announcement and a premium of approximately 18 percent to PharMerica’s 90-day volume weighted average price.

The acquisition agreement was unanimously approved by the Board of Directors of PharMerica. KKR is making the investment primarily through its Americas XII Fund. Walgreens Boots Alliance intends to account for its minority ownership interest in PharMerica as an equity method investment.

The transaction is subject to PharMerica shareholder approval, regulatory approvals, and other customary closing conditions.

PharMerica expects to complete the transaction by early 2018.

UBS Investment Bank and BofA Merrill Lynch are serving as financial advisors to PharMerica and Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP is serving as PharMerica’s legal advisor.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP are serving as legal advisors to KKR and Walgreens Boots Alliance, respectively.

Fully committed debt financing will be provided by Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo, Jefferies and KKR Capital Markets.

In light of the agreement with KKR and Walgreens, PharMerica has cancelled its second quarter 2017 earnings conference call previously scheduled to be held on Friday, August 4, 2017, at 10:00 a.m. EDT.

PharMerica does not intend to hold earnings conference calls during the pendency of the transaction.

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Private Payroll Rose 178K in July

U.S. ADP reported private payrolls increased 178k in July

 U.S. ADP reported private payrolls increased 178k in July. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar to read more

The 178k July ADP rise undershot the 185k private payroll estimate with a 190k total payroll increase, following a big 33k boost in the June rise to 191k from 158k that reversed the gap to the 187k private payroll rise in that month.

Analysts saw a lean 4k July goods employment rise despite still-firm factory sentiment readings, with gains of 6k for construction and 3k for mining but a 4k drop for factories, alongside a largely expected 174k service job gain.

The “as reported” ADP figures have overshot private payrolls in every month since the October methodology change except April and June, and perhaps now in August, to leave an average overshoot of a hefty 47k and an average monthly 2017 gain of 217k.

Analysts saw undershoots of 29k in June and 17k in April, though with a 94k interim overshoot in May, and prior overshoots of 204k in March, 76k in February, 42k in January, 3k in December, 38k in November, and 15k in October.

The ADP as-reported average absolute error since the 2016 methodology change is 58k, versus a 35k average absolute error for the survey median.

The Labor Department reports July’s job data on Friday August 4th.

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Exelixis to Present Data on its Cancer Drugs

The European Society for Medical Oncology Congress will be held in Madrid, September 8 – 12, 2017.

 

Exelixis says to present data from cabozanitinib, cobimetinib at ESMO

 

 Exelixis says to present data from cabozanitinib, See Stockwinners.com Market Radar to read more

Exelixis (EXEL) says to present data from #cabozanitinib, cobimetinib at ESMO Exelixis announced that data from clinical trials of cabozantinib and cobimetinib will be the subject of 10 presentations at the European Society for Medical Oncology 2017 Congress in Madrid, September 8 – 12, 2017.

Progression-free survival by independent radiology review and updated overall survival results from CABOSUN, a randomized phase 2 clinical trial of cabozantinib compared with sunitinib in patients with previously untreated advanced renal cell carcinoma, will be presented as a late-breaking abstract in the Genitourinary Tumours, Non-Prostate poster discussion session on Sunday, September 10.

Final data from the phase 1 study of cabozantinib in combination with nivolumab with or without ipilimumab for the treatment of metastatic urothelial carcinoma and other genitourinary malignancies will be presented in the Genitourinary Tumours, Non-Prostate oral presentation session on Saturday, September 9.

Additionally, poster presentations will detail the evaluation of cabozantinib in RCC and advanced penile squamous cell carcinoma, and of cobimetinib in combination studies in metastatic #melanoma.

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Vertex Says FDA approves Kalydeco for use in more than 600 people with CF

Vertex says FDA approves Kalydeco for use in more than 600 people with CF

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Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX) announced that the U.S. FDA has approved #KALYDECO for use in more than 600 people with cystic fibrosis ages 2 and older who have one of five residual function mutations that result in a splicing defect in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator gene.

This approval was based on Phase 3 clinical data for KALYDECO in these mutations and follows the FDA’s approval of KALYDECO in May 2017 for 23 other residual function mutations, which was based on analyses of in vitro data.

Both approvals are supported by more than five years of real-world clinical experience that demonstrate KALYDECO’s established safety and efficacy profile.

RAISED GUIDANCE

Based on today’s approval, Vertex increased its guidance for 2017 KALYDECO product revenues to a range of $770M-$800M.

Vertex’s guidance range for total CF product revenues in 2017 is now $1.87B-$2.1B, including ORKAMBI guidance of $1.1B-$1.3B. KALYDECO is now approved in the U.S. to treat people with CF ages 2 and older who have one of 38 ivacaftor-responsive mutations in the CFTR gene.

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International Barrier Technology Sold for $22 Million

Louisiana-Pacific to acquire Int’l Barrier Tech for $22M

Louisiana-Pacific to acquire Int'l Barrier Tech for $22M. See Stockwinners.com Market Radar to read more

 

Louisiana-Pacific Corporation (LPX) announced it has entered into an arrangement agreement to acquire Watkins, Minn.-based International Barrier Technology Inc. (IBTGF) for $22M.

The agreement is for 100% of the shares of Barrier, a British Columbia company publicly traded on the TSX Venture Exchange, making Barrier a wholly owned subsidiary of LP.

International Barrier Technology Inc. develops, manufactures, and markets proprietary fire resistant building materials designed to protect people and property from the destruction of fire in the United States. The company uses non-toxic Pyrotite formulation that is used to coat wood panels and has application to engineered wood products, paint, plastics, and expanded polystyrene.

The transaction is subject to the approval of the Barrier shareholders and satisfaction of customary conditions, including court approval.

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