March 20 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Monday:
** Britain's Vodafone Group VOD.L and Idea Cellular IDEA.NS agreed to merge their Indian operations in a $23 billion deal, creating the country's biggest telecoms business after the entry of a new rival sparked a brutal price war. U.S. electronic payments company MoneyGram International Inc MGI.O said that peer Euronet Worldwide Inc's EEFT.O offer could result in a superior proposal compared to the one from China's Ant Financial Services Group. French IT consulting firm Atos ATOS.PA denied that its Worldline payment terminals business was preparing an offer for Ingenico, after a report that Worldline was planning to propose an acquisition of Ingenico worth 7.5 billion euros to 8 billion euros ($8.1 billion-$8.6 billion).
** Britain's Hansteen Holdings HSTN.L has agreed to sell its German and Dutch property portfolios for 1.28 billion euros ($1.38 billion) to a venture between Blackstone (NYSE: BX ) Group LP BX.N and M7 Real Estate. United Arab Emirates-based hospital operator NMC Health Plc NMC.L plans to expand in Gulf markets with a debut bond issue to fund acquisitions, its new chief executive said. Russia's largest retailer Magnit MGNT.MM denied on Monday that it planned to buy retail units from indebted Croatian food group Agrokor, after the Slovenian daily paper Finance reported its interest. Public relations software provider Cision said it would go public as part of a merger with a blank-check company, as it seeks capital to double down on the fast-growing marketing software industry.
Cision, which is controlled by U.S. private equity firm GTCR LLC, will become a unit of blank-check firm Capitol Acquisition Corp III CLAC.O , the companies said. Brazil's state-controlled oil producer Petróleo Brasileiro SA plans to resume planned asset sales as soon as possible following a state auditing court ruling validating the legality of the process, Chief Executive Officer Pedro Parente said. Arcelik ARCLK.IS , the home appliances arm of Turkey's biggest industrial conglomerate Koc Holding KCHOL.IS , is working on acquisitions to speed up its international expansion, particularly in Asia, its chief executive said. Lubrizol Corp, the specialty chemicals unit of Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRKa ) Inc BRKa.N , said it plans to take majority control of its Indian joint venture with state-run Indian Oil Corp IOC.NS , boosting its stake to 74 percent from 50 percent. The Porsche and Piech families are looking to strike a swift deal to buy shares in Porsche SE PSHG_p.DE from Volkswagen's VOWG_p.DE former chairman Ferdinand Piech, a person familiar with the matter said. Private equity firm BC Partners LLP is in advanced talks to acquire U.S. surgical center operator National Surgical Hospitals Inc, in a deal that could value it at close to $1 billion, including debt, people familiar with the matter said. Chinese investment group CEFC has asked for regulatory approval for raising their stake in J&T Finance Group by acquiring shares from the Czech-Slovak financial group's founders Ivan Jakabovic and Jozef Tkac, the anti-monopoly regulator UOHS. Four Dutch provincial governments said they were opposed to a takeover of paints and coatings maker Akzo Nobel AKZO.AS due to potential job losses, in a sign of the challenges facing the company's U.S. suitor. Borr Drilling BORR.NFF , founded by former executives of financially troubled Seadrill SDRL.OL , has snapped up Transocean's RIGN.S RIG.N fleet of shallow-water drilling rigs for $1.35 billion. L'Oreal's OREP.PA sale of British retailer The Body Shop has drawn interest from a series of private equity investors who are lining up indicative bids ahead of a mid-April deadline, sources familiar with the matter said. French luxury goods company LVMH LVMH.PA has agreed to buy a majority stake in French independent perfume house Maison Francis Kurkdjian as it expands in fast-growing niche luxury fragrances. ($1 = 0.9301 euros)
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