September 25, 2018

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Streetwise newsletter: A full package of analysis on the big Barrick deal
  Streetwise newsletter: A full package of analysis on the big Barrick deal

Here are the top reads on deals and financial services over the last 24 hours,


Barrick swallows Randgold in deal creating $18.3-billion gold mining giant: Barrick Gold is swallowing African operator Randgold Resources in a takeover worth roughly US$6-billion that will ensure its status as the world’s biggest gold company, and bring in a chief executive officer for the first time since 2014. Story (Eric Reguly and Niall McGee, for subscribers)

The gold sector struggles to attract investors, despite Barrick’s big promise: Even the most optimistic investors looking at Barrick Gold Corp.’s tie-up with Randgold Resources Ltd. must ask themselves an uncomfortable question: Can a big merger actually resurrect the gold industry? Analysis (Tim Kiladze, for subscribers)

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Barrick’s new CEO Mark Bristow is a blunt-spoken, motorcycle-riding Africa expert: Barrick Gold Corp.’s new chief executive officer, Mark Bristow, is a larger-than-life character: a former conscript soldier in South Africa’s apartheid army whose hobby is riding motorcycles across the most dangerous and remote corners of the African continent. The 59-year-old miner has manoeuvred shrewdly through Africa’s challenges, building his Randgold Resources Ltd. into a multibillion-dollar empire with major projects in Mali, Ivory Coast and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Story (Geoffrey York, for subscribers)

Barrick’s hiring of Mark Bristow sets up potential clash of strategic vision: Barrick Gold Corp. executive chairman John Thornton has been a great admirer of Randgold Resources Ltd. CEO Mark Bristow and has circled him for years. On Monday, the bromace triggered Barrick’s US$6-billion takeover of Randgold. It was an effective – though expensive – way for Mr. Thornton to fill the vacant CEO position at Barrick; Mr. Bristow is to become the head of the enlarged company. Now we know why Mr. Thornton was tempted to leave that position open for four years. As far as he was concerned, there was only one candidate for the job, and that candidate was Mr. Bristow. Opinion (Eric Reguly, for subscribers)


U.S. cannabis firms eye market debut in Canada: At least a dozen cannabis companies that operate in the United States are preparing to go public on Canadian stock exchanges, backed by local investment banks and law firms that have been hired to help them tap the market. Story (Andrew Willis and Christina Pellegrini, for subscribers)

Sobeys parent looks to beef up with $800-million acquisition of Ontario grocery chain Farm Boy: The parent company of Sobeys Inc. has agreed to acquire Ontario grocery chain Farm Boy in an $800-million deal that aims to beef up its business in fast-growing cities and suburbs. Story (Marina Strauss, for subscribers)

Media sector: Satellite-radio company Sirius XM Holdings Inc. will buy online music service Pandora Media Inc. in a US$3.5-billion all-stock deal that will help it battle growing competition from streaming rivals Spotify and Apple Music. Story

Media sector: U.S. cable giant Comcast Corp. scored a big win in the scramble for media assets by beating Rupert Murdoch, and his backer The Walt Disney Co., in the battle for Sky PLC with an eye-watering US$40-billion bid. Story

Retail sector: Sears Holdings Corp would have to sell more real estate and restructure its debt, Chief Executive Officer Eddie Lampert’s hedge fund said in a regulatory filing, as the retailer looks to avoid bankruptcy. Story


RBC issues first bail-in debt bond: Royal Bank of Canada has set the bar for bail-in debt, issuing the first in a new class of bonds intended to keep taxpayers from having to bail out distressed banks in the event of a crisis. Story (James Bradshaw, for subscribers)

Money laundering: Germany’s financial watchdog has ordered Deutsche Bank to do more to prevent money laundering and “terrorist financing,” and has appointed a third party to assess progress. Story

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