Company News: Moody's, Club Med, Valeant, Coty, Shuanghui International
• Moody’s Investors Service raised its outlook for the U.S. banking system to “stable,” almost five years after it slapped a “negative” assessment on the sector. Banks have buttressed their balance sheets with capital and are benefiting from low interest rates and a burgeoning real estate recovery. Moody’s still has a negative outlook for Bank of America and Citigroup.
• Club Méditerranée, the French resort operator better known as Club Med, received a takeover bid from its two largest shareholders, insurer AXA and Fosun International, a Chinese conglomerate. Going private would end almost half a century of public listing for the all-inclusive resort. Club Med started in 1950 on the Mediterranean island of Mallorca in a village created from used military tents. Despite closing properties in Europe and expanding in Asia, Club Med posted losses in six of the past 10 years.
• Valeant Pharmaceuticals International has struck an $8.7 billion deal to buy Bausch & Lomb, which specializes in eye care. Despite the massive price tag, investors seem to think Valeant is getting a good deal, sending shares of the Canadian company up 14 percent immediately after the buyout was announced.
• Coty, the Parisian perfumer, filed to raise up to $1.1 billion in a U.S. initial public offering next month. The proceeds will go to Coty’s current owners, including private equity firm Berkshire Partners.
• Shuanghui International Holdings, China’s biggest pork producer, agreed to buy Smithfield Foods for about $4.7 billion. If the acquisition is approved, Shuanghui will control an additional 16 million hogs a year to help supply China’s growing appetite for pork. The offer was almost a third higher than Smithfield’s market price.