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Bid & Ask

Noteworthy expenditures of the week

Health Care: $3.9 bn

Price that Grifols, Europe's largest maker of blood-plasma products, is paying for Talecris Biotherapeutics Holdings (TLCR) of North Carolina. Talecris has a big chunk of the $7 billion U.S. market for infused treatments for immune-system disorders. (Plasma, in case you don't have total recall of biology 101, is the watery yellow liquid that carries blood cells.)


Crude for delivery in December 2018 traded at $92.78 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) on June 4, vs. $71.51 for July 2010 delivery. The premium for delivery in eight years compared with the next-month price has shot up 86 percent since BP's (BP) Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico exploded in April. The surge signals that the markets believe prices have nowhere to go but up as the biggest oil spill in U.S. history curbs drilling and makes it more expensive to develop new fields.


A silk taffeta gown worn by Lady Diana Spencer in 1981 fetched the equivalent of $275,000 at auction. The strapless, low-cut dress caused a sensation in Britain and helped turn Prince Charles' 19-year-old fiancée into a fashion icon. It was sold by its designers, Elizabeth and David Emanuel, and acquired by Chile's Museo de la Moda.

Beverages: $715 mn

Price Coca-Cola (KO) is paying for the rights to distribute some of the brands of the Dr Pepper Snapple Group (DPS). The deal will allow Coca-Cola to sell Canada Dry and Dr Pepper, among other drinks, in some regions of the U.S. and Canada for 20 years. PepsiCo (PEP) inked a similar $900 million agreement with the Texas-based company earlier this year.


Marsh & McLennan (MMC) is selling its Kroll security consulting operation to Altegrity for $1.1 billion. That's less than the $1.9 billion the insurance giant paid for Kroll in 2004. Altegrity, a private-equity-backed security firm that does everything from running background checks on U.S. government employees to consulting for foreign governments on military strategy, is led by Michael Cherkasky, who ran Kroll from 2001 to 2004.


A museum paid $35,750 for the cab that whisked President John F. Kennedy's killer away from the scene of the crime, the Associated Press reported. Checker Motors donated the cab to the now defunct Pate Museum of Transportation in Texas in 1979. The Checker Marathon will henceforth be parked at Historic Auto Attractions in Illinois.


ABB (ABB), the Swiss company that is the world's largest supplier of power transmission equipment, offered $1.3 billion for Chloride Group, a British maker of gear to protect against outages. ABB's move sets up a potential bidding war for Chloride, which in April spurned a lower offer from Emerson (EMR) of the U.S. ABB is on a shopping spree, having built up a $7.2 billion cash pile last year.


Countrywide Financial will pay $108 million to settle claims that it charged struggling homeowners excessive fees. Countrywide, once the top mortage servicer in the U.S. with a more than $1.4 trillion portfolio, was acquired by Bank of America (BAC) in 2008.

Insurance: $657 mn

The cost to Prudential (PUK) and its shareholders of the failed takeover of AIA—a figure roughly equivalent to one-third of the British insurer's 2009 operating profit. Prudential will pay AIA's parent, AIG (AIG), a breakup fee of $223 million for not completing the $35.5 billion transaction. The remainder is fees to lawyers and bankers who worked on the deal. Prudential Chief Executive Tidjane Thiam, who spent three months fighting to win investor support for the biggest acquisition in the firm's history, is now fighting for his job.

Lindblad is deputy news editor for BusinessWeek.

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