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...But a bid for Endesa SA looks like a deal too far. Blackstone, CVC, and KKR have mulled an offer for the Spanish utility, El Confidencial reported on Wednesday. Italian energy giant Enel SpA, which owns 70% of Endesa, scotched the report, branding it “old groundless speculation.” Despite the denial, Endesa would be a logical target for private equity. It would be big, with an enterprise value of €26.5 billion ($28 billion) before any premium, and so require a group of firms to muster the equity necessary. But Endesa’s net debt is low at just 1.3 times Ebitda. Lifting that to, say, four times would raise nearly €10 billion, cutting the amount of cash needed for a purchase. Asset sales could help cut the equity ticket too. Demand for energy in Spain is expected to rise and there are probably costs to take out. Little wonder private equity, sovereign and infrastructure funds are already involved in the country’s industry. ...Live Mint on March 12, 2017, 7:53 p.m.
...It has taken a long time for the spectacles industry to create a major player that makes both lenses and frames, despite the evident logic of combining the two. Now French lens-maker Essilor International SA and frame designer Luxottica Group SpA are merging to create a €51 billion ($54 billion) glasses giant. The deal is good for both sides—especially Luxottica and its 81-year-old founder and 63% shareholder Leonardo Del Vecchio. Keeping lenses and frames separate doesn’t look wise as the industry tries to establish a new market for “smart” glasses. A deal between Essilor and Luxottica should lead to more productive R&D. Both sides were already encroaching on each other’s turf. For Luxottica, the competitive dynamics of luxury have become more challenging as the big brand houses have sought to capture more value from the eyewear market. Kering took its eyewear business in-house a couple of years ago. ...Live Mint on Jan. 17, 2017, 10:47 a.m.