Sponsors 3i, Allianz seek buyers for ferry operator Scandlines

British private equity firm 3i Group Plc (LON:III) and German peer Allianz Capital Partners GmbH have chosen Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) and ING Groep NV (AMS:INGA) as advisors on a potential offload of ferry operator Scandlines, Bloomberg reported, citing people in the know.

The banks will also bankroll the proposed transaction, which may garner the attention of infrastructure funds, the insiders, who spoke on condition of anonymity as the discussions were not public, told Bloomberg. The target may have a value of some EUR1.4bn (USD1.8bn), according to the sources.

Scandlines and 3i, as well as the lenders, would not comment on a possible sale, when reached by the news agency, which also was not able to establish immediate contact with Allianz Capital Partners.

3i and Allianz Capital Partners each hold a 49% stake in Scandlines’ parent, Scandferries Group, while the remainder of the company is controlled by its management. The private equity firms, together with Deutsche Seereederei GmbH, bought into the ferry operator in 2007, with the three parties paying an aggregate EUR1.56bn to Deutsche Bahn AG and the Danish government for the takeover. The private investors purchased Deutsche Seereederei’s holding in 2010.

Scandlines has headquarters both in Copenhagen, Denmark and Rostock, Germany. The company served 11.5m passengers, 2.6m cars and 640,000 trucks on its three principal itineraries in 2011.

Allianz Capital Partners GmbH is the private equity arm of German financial group Allianz SE (FRA:ALV).

Nike agrees to sell Manchester-based sportswear group Umbro

US sports shoe and clothing group Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE) said on Wednesday it had struck a definitive deal to sell Manchester-based football equipment supplier Umbro Ltd for USD225m (EUR173.9m).

The buyer is New York-based brand management company Iconix Brand Group Inc (NASDAQ:ICON), which licenses brands to retailers and manufacturers primarily in the apparel, footwear and apparel accessory industries.

The divestment serves the company’s strategy, revealed at the end of May, to concentrate on its Nike, Jordan, Converse and Hurley brands, which are seen to have high growth potential. The plan also includes the sale of leather handbag and shoe maker Cole Haan.

Commenting on the deal, Nike’s president and CEO, Mark Parker, said that the divestment of any of the company’s businesses was a difficult decision to make. According to him, the Nike’s football category would be able to meet the needs of footballers following the sale.

Neil Cole, CEO Iconix Brand Group, described the acquisition as an “exciting” one, which will add more than 30 licensees in over 100 countries with a global loyal consumer fan base. He pledged that his company would work to further develop the brand.

The transaction is seen to be finalised by the end of 2012.

Canada’s TD Bank acquires Target’s credit card operation

Canada’s Toronto-Dominion Bank (TSE:TD), or TD Bank, said it has reached a deal to purchase the existing US Visa and private label card portfolio of Target Corp (NYSE:TGT) for an undisclosed amount.

The particular US credit card portfolio has a current gross outstanding balance of USD5.9bn (EUR4.6bn). Its acquisition fits well with TD Bank’s risk profile and strategy and is expected to help the buyer achieve its earnings target of USD1.6bn from the US P&C segment in 2013, group president and CEO Ed Clark stated. He also noted that the agreement will significantly grow TD Bank’s presence in the North American credit card business.

The parties have also agreed to a seven-year programme as part of which TD Bank will act as the exclusive issuer of Target-branded Visa and private label consumer credit cards to the latter’s US clients. Under the terms of this programme deal, the two companies will share the profits generated by the portfolios, but Target will have the more substantial interest.

As part of the transaction, which will be financed with available resources, TD Bank will acquire more than five million active Visa and private label accounts and will fund the receivables for the existing Target Visa and private label accounts in the US. The purchase is pending regulatory clearance and is anticipated to close in the first half of next year.

The Canadian entity estimates that its Tier 1 capital ratio will drop by about 20 basis points on completion, on a pro forma basis as at its last quarter to 31 July 2012. Its common equity Tier 1 ratio is seen to go down by some 14 basis points under Basel III on a fully phased in basis. Furthermore, the acquired portfolio is expected to result in a return on assets of around 100 basis points the first year.

Web.com reprices senior Credit facility

Web.com Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: WWWW) said it plans to re-price its first lien credit facility.

Web.com Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: WWWW) said it plans to re-price its first lien credit facility.

A lender conference with the company, together with J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, Deutsche Bank Securities Inc., SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc., Goldman Sachs Lending Partners, Citigroup Global Markets Inc. and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC, as joint lead arrangers and joint bookrunners, is scheduled for Friday, October 26, 2012 at 11 a.m. ET.

The company will seek improved terms on the First Lien Credit Facility and its Revolving Credit Facility, and will also seek a $10 million increase in its Revolving Credit Facility to $60 million.

The company entered into the original First Lien Credit Facility on October 27, 2011 in connection with the acquisition of Network Solutions LLC, which provided for a six-year, $600 million First Lien Term Loan and a five-year, Revolving Credit Facility of $50 million. The company also entered into a seven-year, Second Lien Term Loan of $150 million as part of the same acquisition. The Second Lien Term Loan has approximately $120 million outstanding as of September 30, 2012, and the company is not seeking to re-price this loan at this time.

Web.com Group is a provider of online marketing for small businesses. The company’s website is at http://www.web.com.