Mergers & Acquisitions: Chesapeake’s Permian SALE, GE’s Thai Bank STAKE

Newly released court documents show how The Blackstone Group L.P. (NYSE:BX), Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s (NYSE:GS) private equity arm Bain, along with other firms seem to have colluded on bids for companies they were acquiring in order keep prices lower. It is alleged that, during Bain’s $32.1 billion acquisition of the hospital giant HCA in 2006, bidding competitors agreed to “stand down” as part of an arrangement to divide up the purchases of other firms. These documents comprise a portion of a lawsuit against the companies for the actions.

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Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) will receive an additional $6.9 billion when proceeds of its current divestiture of the majority of its Permian assets along with other properties come through. One part of the proceeds will be used in repayment of $4 billion in term loans during the fourth quarter. Chief Executive Aubrey McClendon says that this move brings the year-to-date sales total to $11.6 billion, and he expects that his firm will reach its full-year goal of between $13 billion and $14 billion.

The General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) is mulling the divestiture of its 33 percent investment in Thailand’s Bank of Ayudhya, according to Bloomberg. With the bank having a market cap of $6.7 billion, GE’s holdings are worth about $2.2 billion and such a sale would be a portion of its strategy of shrinking the size of its GE Capital division. Some $3.9 billion worth its of assets have been sold thus far in 2012.

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