The private equity firm Vista has acquired Advanced Computer Software (ACS) for £725m. ACS is a provider of software and IT services to the primary care sector.
The oil and gas exploration company Ophir Energy has acquired Salamander Energy in a deal worth £314m. The deal gives Ophir access to established operations in South East Asia, where Salamander has operating licenses in Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.
The business finance provider Sancus has been taken over by GLI Finance for £38m. Sancus has loaned £40m to businesses in the Channel Islands since it was established in January 2014.
Bopp & Reuther, a German control valve producer, has been acquired by IMI. The £120m deal establishes IMI’s position in the power sector, where fast growth is predicted in emerging markets such as China and India.
MPs have voted to force the big pub chains to allow their tenants the option of buying beer and other stock on the open market and not just from the company that owns their pub. Pub landlords will also be able to ask for an independent rent review. This has been welcomed by the Campaign For Real Ale, which says it will ‘keep pubs open and ensure the cost of a pint to consumers remains affordable. The large pub companies will no longer be able to charge their tenants prices up to 60 pence a pint higher than open market prices.’ However the British Beer & Pub Association, which represents the large pub companies, said the change is bad news for the industry and that it would ‘hugely damage investment and result in 1,400 more pubs closing, with 7,000 job losses’. The news triggered large falls in the share prices of Enterprise Inns, Greene King, Marston’s and Punch Taverns. The MPs’ decision could yet be overturned by the House of Lords.
Connect Group, the specialist distribution company previously known as Smiths News, has acquired Tuffnells Parcels Express. Established in 1914, Tuffnells is planning to open six new depots over the next two years.
The Financial Conduct Authority has imposed fines totalling £1,114,918,000 on five banks for failing to control business practices in their foreign exchange operations. Traders from different banks colluded to manipulate currency rates in order to make profits for themselves. The five banks are Citibank, HSBC Bank, JPMorgan Chase Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland and UBS. Barclays Bank is still being investigated for similar failings and has not yet reached a settlement with the FCA. The FCA found that between 1 January 2008 and 15 October 2013, ineffective controls at the banks allowed traders to put their banks’ interests ahead of those of their clients, other market participants and the wider UK financial system and that the banks failed to manage obvious risks around confidentiality, conflicts of interest and trading conduct. The foreign exchange market is one of the largest and most liquid markets in the world with a daily average turnover of $5.3 trillion, 40% of which takes place in London.
A management buyout has been completed at Sumo Digital, the videogame developer responsible for titles such as Forza Horizon 2, Sonic and Sega All Star Racing, and the upcoming LittleBigPlanet 3. The private equity company NorthEdge Capital has backed the deal, which sees the existing management team take control from Foundation 9 Entertainment.
The composite door manufacturer Solidor has been acquired by the private equity firm NorthEdge Capital. Solidor will use the investment to expand its senior management team.
The mobile advertising agency Fetch Media has been acquired by Dentsu Aegis Network. Established in 2009, Fetch has offices in London, the US, Germany and Hong Kong.