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Deal: Endeavor Buys Sports Gambling Firm OpenBet For $1.2B

Endeavor Group Holdings (NYSE: EDR), a media and sports conglomerate that owns the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) league, is making a new big acquisition. It's agreed to buy OpenBet , a British company that makes software for sports gambling operators.  Endeavor will pay $1.2bn to buy OpenBet, split into $1bn in cash and $200mn of stock. It's buying OpenBet from  Scientific Games Corporation , a publicly-traded gambling company that bought it in 2017 as part of its $630mn acquisition of NYX Gaming . Divesting an asset bought as part of a $630mn deal in 2017 for $1.2bn four years later represents a very good return on investment for Scientific Games. The acquisition is strategic to strengthen Endeavor's position in the sports betting ecosystem. Right now, the company's main business in that area is IMG Arena , a provider of live-streamed sports video and data feeds to sportsbook operators around the globe. With OpenBet, the business will be complemented with sof

Deal: Hollywood Agency CAA To Buy Rival ICM

In a historic deal in the talent agency industry, two of the biggest entertainment and sports talent agencies operating in the US are about to merge to become one. It's so that Creative Artists Agency (CAA) , a powerhouse talent agency with a roster of stars, has reached a deal to buy ICM Partners , a rival powerhouse agency. CAA buying ICM is a blockbuster deal that'll see two of Hollywood's most powerful talent agencies merge into one more robust powerhouse. The combined agency would be a more formidable one for arch-rivals such as William Morris Endeavor (WME) and United Talent Agency (UTA) . Normally, CAA, ICM, WME, and UTA are considered the "big four" talent agencies in Hollywood and sports, representing the most significant share of A-list talent across both industries. Now, it appears that the "big four" would soon become the "big three."  CAA is the bigger of the two agencies, commanding a bigger roster of talent and business than IC

Deal: PE Firm EQT Bids $3.9B For German Pet Food E-Tailer Zooplus

EQT , a Swedish private equity firm, has bid to buy Zooplus , a German online retailer of pet food and supplies listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. It's offered 470 euros of cash per Zooplus share, valuing the pet food e-tailer at  3.36 billion euros ($3.94bn) . The offer represents a 69% premium to Zooplus's closing price on the 12th of August, the last day before another private equity firm announced a bid for the company. US-based  Hellman & Friedman  first offered 3 billion euros ($3.5bn) then later raised its offer to 3.29 billion euros ($3.85bn). Now it's been outbid by EQT's higher bid. Zooplus also entered buyout talks with US-based KKR & Co. after Hellman & Friedman had penned its offer. But, the PE rival to Hellman later terminated the talks after Hellman raised its bid from 3 billion euros to 3.29 billion euros. With the competing bids, the final decision rests on a vote by Zooplus's shareholders, requiring majority acceptance for any b

Markets: Covid Testing Provider Cue Health Goes Public

A diagnostics startup that found treasures amid dirt from the Covid-19 pandemic has stamped its success with a successful initial public offering (IPO). It's Cue Health , a little-known startup from San Diego that rapidly switched its focus to making Covid-19 testing kits on the onset of the pandemic and has built a big business with that. Cue Health debuted on the Nasdaq exchange on Friday, the 24th of September, raising $200mn before commissions and other underwriting expenses. Its stock climbed 25% on that day to end trading at $20, giving it a market cap of $2.9bn . Cue Health is one of the significant startup success stories to emerge from the pandemic. Before it started providing Covid testing kits, its annual sales were numbered in the low-digit millions but shot up to $23mn in 2020  on the pandemic's onset and $202mn in the first half of 2021 . Because of its fast pivot to providing Covid testing kits, Cue Health was an early mover. Thus, it got lucrative testing contr

Deal: Blackstone Buys Condor Hospitality's Hotel Assets For $305M

Blackstone , the private equity giant, is yet again adding to its massive commercial real estate portfolio with a big purchase. It's agreed to buy the hotel assets of the  Condor Hospitality Trust , a publicly traded real estate investment trust that's liquidating all its assets and winding down its business. Blackstone will pay $305mn in cash to buy Condor's entire hotel portfolio. The PE firm won't be assuming any debt from the purchase. Condor's portfolio includes 15 hotels in 8 American states, some franchised under prestigious brands like Hilton and Marriott . Hotels are the trust's only business from which it gets all its revenue, and now that it's selling them, the trust has instituted a plan to distribute the sale proceeds to shareholders and close down its operations. Notably, Condor is shutting down after a tumultuous year for hotel operators caused by the pandemic's restrictions on travel and recreation. It, in fact, saw annual sales slip f

Markets: Korea's Kakao Pay Delays $1.3B IPO To November

In South Korea, Kakao is one of the leading tech giants, best known for its  KakaoTalk messenger app. But like many tech companies, it's long branched out from messaging into other sectors such as gaming and fintech and made strides there. In fintech, Kakao has a separate digital bank ( KakaoBank ) and mobile payments and wallet app ( Kakao Pay ). The Korean tech giant took KakaoBank public this July with an IPO that raised $2.2bn and didn't just stop there. It then sought to take Kakao Pay public in a separate IPO but has hit some obstacles trying to do so. Just as it sought to take Kakao Pay public, the South Korean government toughened regulations on fintech apps. It made Kakao Pay suspend some services like insurance though the suspended services accounted for a minor part of its revenue. Then, Kakao Pay adjusted its IPO fundraising target to $1.3bn , 6% lower than it previously sought. But even with the hiccups, Kakao Pay still sought to go public by October this year

Earnings: Nike's Sales Falter, Shares Drop 6%

Sports apparel giant Nike has dropped its latest quarterly results , showing that its earnings still stand firm despite sales challenges intensified by the Covid pandemic. But though its earnings beat analyst expectations, Nike's stock fell by a significant percentage during trading on Friday due to its sales outlook. Nike posted $12.2bn in sales in the three months ended August 31, 2021, its fiscal 2022 first quarter. Sales were up 12% year-over-year and slightly unchanged from $12.3bn in the preceding quarter. Nike's sales have dropped significantly due to the Covid pandemic that led to widespread closures of its physical retail centers. Even as the pandemic effects gradually wear off, the company is still battling supply chain disruptions caused by it. As usual, most of Nike's quarterly sales came from the  Nike brand ( $11.6bn ), while a minority was from the Converse brand ( $630mn ). For the quarter, Nike's net profit was $1.9bn , up 23% year-over-year and 27%

Law: Ex-Quant Analyst Indicted For Front-Running Employer's Trades

Insider trading is like the most common crime on Wall Street or the crime most prosecuted. Every now and then, there's always a new insider trading case pursued by the appropriate American authorities; the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Justice Department (DOJ). To the unaware, insider trading is deemed as trading a public company's stock or other types of regulated securities based on material, nonpublic information about the company. The latest insider trading saga now making the rounds is that of a former quant analyst who has just been indicted for front-running his employer's trades and making a killing to the tune of over $8mn. Sergei Polevikov , the former quant analyst, allegedly bought securities he knew his employer ordered in large blocks on behalf of clients and then profited from little price bumps of the securities that typically occurred when the large orders were executed. He's said to have done this with a brokerage account opened in his

Markets: Dell Authorizes $5B Share Buyback, Dividend Plan

Dell Technologies (NYSE: DELL) is one of those tech giants that though not lustrous as in their prime, are still going strong with tens of billions of dollars of revenue annually. Others in that camp include IBM, HP, Oracle, et al. In today's news, Dell has announced a new share buyback program of up to $5bn beginning this November. The buyback will start at a projected time when Dell has completed its VMware spin-off that was announced this April, a deal that'll hand over nearly $10bn of cash as a special dividend to it that'll be used to pay down debt. Companies like Dell typically spend billions on share buybacks to stimulate stock growth, companies whose revenues are massive but growing merely in single-digit percentages over the years. Buybacks can be a remedy when revenue growth isn't enough to encourage investor interest. In fact, Dell bought back $562mn  worth of shares in the three months ended July 2021, its most recent fiscal quarter. It concluded the s

Moves: Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer To Step Down

There's a major leadership change at the social media giant Facebook, Inc . The company's long-time Chief Technology Officer (CTO), in the person of  Mike Schroepfer, is stepping down from his role. His departure plans were made known in a recent SEC filing . Schroepfer will leave the CTO role by next year but won't leave Facebook entirely. He'll be transitioning to the role of " Senior Fellow " at the company, a position that seems to have been created just for him as he'll be the first to adopt it.  When he steps down, Schroepfer will be replaced by a star engineer at Facebook named  Andrew Bosworth , the company's current vice president of augmented and virtual reality. Bosworth is a crucial leader for Facebook's hardware development and R&D efforts and a known close confidant of CEO Mark Zuckerberg. As Bosworth takes up the CTO role, he'll be switching from leading just Facebook's hardware team of 10,000+ employees to both the hard

Deal: DraftKings Bids $22B For UK Betting Giant Entain

A certain American company has been on a tear ever since going public last year. It's DraftKings , a sports betting company that's riding the high waves of increased legalization of mobile sports betting in the US and tearing its way into more business as time goes. In the US where DraftKings is based, there's been a wave of legalization of sports betting spurred by the Supreme Court striking down a federal ban on it in 2018. It's such that sports betting is now legalized in more than two dozen US states and more states are considering it. The wave has vaulted DraftKings to high growth thanks to the company being an early mover and working hard to build this growth, DraftKings has spent big money on acquisitions to expand. For example, just last month, the company bought online casino Golden Nugget in a $1.6bn all-stock deal that marked its biggest acquisition to date. Right now and shortly after making its biggest acquisition, it appears that DraftKings is even push

Antitrust: US Sues To Block JetBlue-American Airlines Alliance

American antitrust actions against big companies have been brewing under President Biden, particularly against big tech companies like Faceboo k and Google . But the latest one from the government is targeting an industry far away from tech, the airline industry; The US Justice Department (DOJ) has filed a lawsuit  seeking to block an alliance between American Airlines , a major transnational and domestic airline, and JetBlue , a low-cost domestic airline. The alliance was for JetBlue to handle domestic flights between  Boston and New York City  on behalf of American Airlines with ticket sharing between both airlines. Now, the DOJ appears to be very opposed to the alliance along with the Attorneys General of six US states plus Washington, D.C. that followed it to file the lawsuit. The suit's core allegation is that such an alliance discourages airline competition and may cause fare hikes for everyday flyers. Given its statement, the DOJ actually has a point to make as an alliance

US Sanctions First Crypto Exchange For Alleged Ransomware Ties

The US government has moved to blacklist a Russian crypto exchange in what seems to be the first time the government is taking such an action against a crypto exchange; The US Treasury Department has announced sanctions against a crypto exchange named  Suex  for allegations of facilitating transactions for ransomware operators based in Russia. The department therein claims that over 40% of Suex's known transaction history was associated with illicit and criminal operations. The US has faced a wave of ransomware attacks over the past year with victims including a major oil pipeline company ( Colonial Pipeline ) that paid a $5mn ransom and a major food supplier ( JBS ) that paid an $11mn ransom . Both attacks are suspected to have been carried out by Russian criminal groups, making it a major point of concern that US President Joe Biden pressed Putin to address  in a July phone call; Out of many, the most infamous ransomware group globally appears to be a Russian organization name

Deal: US Bancorp Buys MUFG Union Bank For $8B

There's a big new consolidation-by-acquisition in the American financial services industry. It's that US Bancorp , a retail banking giant, is buying the MUFG Union Bank , the American retail banking division of the Japanese financial services giant Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group . US Bancorp will pay $8bn to buy MUFG Union Bank, split into $5.5bn in cash and 44 million shares worth $2.5bn at current prices. Upon closing the deal, the Japanese parent company of the acquired bank will hold a 2.9% stake in US Bancorp with the shares it's getting. Notably, the acquisition excludes MUFG Union Bank’s corporate and investment banking operations and certain other assets, with the focus mostly on its retail banking operations. US Bancorp is the parent company of the flagship U.S. Bank , the fifth-largest banking institution in America. The acquisition will benefit the flagship bank with the addition of 1 million+ retail customers, 190,000 small business customers, and $90bn in d

NFT Startup Sorare Raises $680M, Valued At $4.3B

A hot startup from France in the nascent field of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) has raised a big round of funding validating investor interest in the field. It's Sorare , a football fantasy gaming platform based on real-life teams where the virtual players are represented by tradable NFTs. Sorare has raised a whopping $680mn Series B round led by SoftBank at a valuation of $4.3bn , it announced . That figure seems like the biggest-ever Series B round so far for a European startup.  SoftBank led the round and was joined by a host of other investors, both new and existing, including Benchmark, Atomico, Bessemer Ventures, and D1 Capital. On the individual side, football stars including  Gerard Piqué , Antoine Griezmann , and Rio Ferdinand (retired) also chipped into the round. Before this round, Sorare (founded in 2018) had raised just about $50mn across three rounds, data from Crunchbase shows. But with the latest round being a thunderclap of $680mn, it appears that investors are c

French Cloud Provider OVHCloud Heads For Paris IPO

A major tech company from France has kicked off preparations for an initial public offering (IPO) on the country's domestic exchanges in what would mark one of the landmark tech IPOs to emerge from France in recent years. It's OVHCloud , a cloud hosting provider that's known to be the largest of its kind in Europe.  OVHCloud is akin to the AWS of Europe. It has many data centers scattered across the globe that forms the backbone of its cloud hosting services. Now over two decades since it was founded (in 1999), the company appears headed for an exit with a public listing. OVHcloud just recently announced plans to list its shares on the Euronext Paris stock exchange which is France's largest securities market. The company intends to raise up to €400 mn ($470mn) from the IPO, it said. As usual with companies registering to go public, OVHCloud opened its books and provided major insights about its business with information not publicly disclosed before. The primary metri

Markets: Twitter To Pay $810M To Settle Investor Lawsuit

Twitter , the social media giant, will pay a huge sum to settle a class-action lawsuit brought against it by some shareholders, filings show. The company has agreed to pay the sum of $810mn to settle a lawsuit filed in 2016 by investors alleging it provided misleading information on its growth prospects; The settlement was disclosed in a recent SEC filing . Twitter says it'll use its cash on hand to pay it, drawing from the $4.1bn of cash it reported having by June end. The settlement is expected to be paid in this year's fourth quarter. The lawsuit Twitter has agreed to settle was a class-action lawsuit filed by a group of shareholders with allegations that the social media giant provided false information about its growth prospects; The original suit was filed by a shareholder named Doris Shenwick who picked fault with Twitter stating at a 2014 meeting with analysts that its number of monthly active users (MAUs) was expected to increase to over 550 million in the "in

Crypto: Coinbase Signs New Contract With US ICE

Coinbase is the crypto giant best known for its exchange for trading cryptocurrencies but on the side, the company has a business of providing analytics tools to governmental customers; Most of that analytics business stems from its acquisition of a startup named Neutrino in 2019, an acquisition that brought the company many PR headaches after it was revealed that Neutrino's founders previously worked at a startup that sold spyware to governments with shoddy human rights records. The headaches led Coinbase to sever ties with the implicated founders but nonetheless maintain its analytics business and chase federal contracts for it. Its customers now include the US Secret Service and the infamous Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency, documents show. Now, it appears that Coinbase just this month secured a new federal contract. Data contained in the US  Federal Procurement Data System shows that the ICE just awarded Coinbase a contract potentially worth $1.4mn . It&

SPAC: Legal Case Threatens Israeli Startup Pagaya's $9B Merger

Among the major SPAC deals of the past week was that of Pagaya , an Israeli fintech startup that agreed to merge with a special-purpose acquisition company at a valuation of $8.5bn . It's merging with  EJF Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ: EJFA), a SPAC that raised $288mn from its IPO this February. But now, Pagaya's merger has met the hurdle of a potential lawsuit from some shareholders that are being pushed by two American law firms - Brodsky & Smith and Levi & Korsinsky . The firms said they're probing whether EJF's board failed to conduct a 'fair' process for the deal especially in the hefty dilution of ownership interest if the merger finalizes. Notably, the amount of cash held in trust by EJF Acquisition Corp is $288mn, barely 3.4% of Pagaya's projected valuation of $8.5bn. That means that after all is said and done, the investors that bought into EJF during its IPO would hold just 3.4% of Pagaya's shares, implying major share dilution and thi

Markets: Zoom's $15B Five9 Deal Hits A Hurdle

This July, Zoom (NASDAQ: ZM), the famous video-conferencing software company whose fortunes escalated during the pandemic, inked its first big acquisition with Five9 (NASDAQ: FIVN), a company that makes software to manage contact and customer support operations online.  The agreement was for Zoom to buy Five9 for $14.7bn paid fully with the acquirer's stock, but now that deal appears to be hitting a hurdle; Since the acquisition agreement, Zoom's stock has fallen by 20% and shrunk the value of its offer. In fact, Five9's shares now appear to be trading at a value above the value of Zoom's offer with the 20% drop taken into account, casting the deal in doubt. Unsurprisingly, an influential advisory firm known as  Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) is  cautioning against the deal and advising Five9 shareholders to reject it. The firm presses that Five9 shareholders would be exchanging their stock for “a more volatile stock whose growth prospects have become le

Most Read Posts

US Sanctions First Crypto Exchange For Alleged Ransomware Ties

The US government has moved to blacklist a Russian crypto exchange in what seems to be the first time the government is taking such an action against a crypto exchange; The US Treasury Department has announced sanctions against a crypto exchange named  Suex  for allegations of facilitating transactions for ransomware operators based in Russia. The department therein claims that over 40% of Suex's known transaction history was associated with illicit and criminal operations. The US has faced a wave of ransomware attacks over the past year with victims including a major oil pipeline company ( Colonial Pipeline ) that paid a $5mn ransom and a major food supplier ( JBS ) that paid an $11mn ransom . Both attacks are suspected to have been carried out by Russian criminal groups, making it a major point of concern that US President Joe Biden pressed Putin to address  in a July phone call; Out of many, the most infamous ransomware group globally appears to be a Russian organization name

Law: Ex-Quant Analyst Indicted For Front-Running Employer's Trades

Insider trading is like the most common crime on Wall Street or the crime most prosecuted. Every now and then, there's always a new insider trading case pursued by the appropriate American authorities; the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Justice Department (DOJ). To the unaware, insider trading is deemed as trading a public company's stock or other types of regulated securities based on material, nonpublic information about the company. The latest insider trading saga now making the rounds is that of a former quant analyst who has just been indicted for front-running his employer's trades and making a killing to the tune of over $8mn. Sergei Polevikov , the former quant analyst, allegedly bought securities he knew his employer ordered in large blocks on behalf of clients and then profited from little price bumps of the securities that typically occurred when the large orders were executed. He's said to have done this with a brokerage account opened in his

Deal: DraftKings Bids $22B For UK Betting Giant Entain

A certain American company has been on a tear ever since going public last year. It's DraftKings , a sports betting company that's riding the high waves of increased legalization of mobile sports betting in the US and tearing its way into more business as time goes. In the US where DraftKings is based, there's been a wave of legalization of sports betting spurred by the Supreme Court striking down a federal ban on it in 2018. It's such that sports betting is now legalized in more than two dozen US states and more states are considering it. The wave has vaulted DraftKings to high growth thanks to the company being an early mover and working hard to build this growth, DraftKings has spent big money on acquisitions to expand. For example, just last month, the company bought online casino Golden Nugget in a $1.6bn all-stock deal that marked its biggest acquisition to date. Right now and shortly after making its biggest acquisition, it appears that DraftKings is even push

Antitrust: US Sues To Block JetBlue-American Airlines Alliance

American antitrust actions against big companies have been brewing under President Biden, particularly against big tech companies like Faceboo k and Google . But the latest one from the government is targeting an industry far away from tech, the airline industry; The US Justice Department (DOJ) has filed a lawsuit  seeking to block an alliance between American Airlines , a major transnational and domestic airline, and JetBlue , a low-cost domestic airline. The alliance was for JetBlue to handle domestic flights between  Boston and New York City  on behalf of American Airlines with ticket sharing between both airlines. Now, the DOJ appears to be very opposed to the alliance along with the Attorneys General of six US states plus Washington, D.C. that followed it to file the lawsuit. The suit's core allegation is that such an alliance discourages airline competition and may cause fare hikes for everyday flyers. Given its statement, the DOJ actually has a point to make as an alliance

Deal: Blackstone Buys Condor Hospitality's Hotel Assets For $305M

Blackstone , the private equity giant, is yet again adding to its massive commercial real estate portfolio with a big purchase. It's agreed to buy the hotel assets of the  Condor Hospitality Trust , a publicly traded real estate investment trust that's liquidating all its assets and winding down its business. Blackstone will pay $305mn in cash to buy Condor's entire hotel portfolio. The PE firm won't be assuming any debt from the purchase. Condor's portfolio includes 15 hotels in 8 American states, some franchised under prestigious brands like Hilton and Marriott . Hotels are the trust's only business from which it gets all its revenue, and now that it's selling them, the trust has instituted a plan to distribute the sale proceeds to shareholders and close down its operations. Notably, Condor is shutting down after a tumultuous year for hotel operators caused by the pandemic's restrictions on travel and recreation. It, in fact, saw annual sales slip f

Alert: Coding Platform GitLab Files For US IPO

Catching us as a surprise late on Friday, GitLab , a popular coding platform and rival to GitHub,  has filed for an IPO in the US. GitLab is a popular code repository hosting service for software developers and is the 2nd-largest of its kind only beaten by GitHub.  While GitHub sold to Microsoft for $7.5bn three years ago, GitLab has remained independent and now is about to test the waters as a publicly-traded company. GitLab has unveiled its S-1 filing with the US SEC as is usual for companies looking to go public in the US and the S-1 document provides great insight into the GitLab's business with information not publicly disclosed before. Therefore, we'll be extracting some of the most important info from the bulky filing, mostly on its revenue stats. By the Numbers GitLab reported  $152mn in revenue in the fiscal year ended January 2021, compared to $81mn in the preceding year. In the first half of 2021, the company brought in $108mn in sales, compared to $64mn in t

Markets: Korea's Kakao Pay Delays $1.3B IPO To November

In South Korea, Kakao is one of the leading tech giants, best known for its  KakaoTalk messenger app. But like many tech companies, it's long branched out from messaging into other sectors such as gaming and fintech and made strides there. In fintech, Kakao has a separate digital bank ( KakaoBank ) and mobile payments and wallet app ( Kakao Pay ). The Korean tech giant took KakaoBank public this July with an IPO that raised $2.2bn and didn't just stop there. It then sought to take Kakao Pay public in a separate IPO but has hit some obstacles trying to do so. Just as it sought to take Kakao Pay public, the South Korean government toughened regulations on fintech apps. It made Kakao Pay suspend some services like insurance though the suspended services accounted for a minor part of its revenue. Then, Kakao Pay adjusted its IPO fundraising target to $1.3bn , 6% lower than it previously sought. But even with the hiccups, Kakao Pay still sought to go public by October this year

Markets: Covid Testing Provider Cue Health Goes Public

A diagnostics startup that found treasures amid dirt from the Covid-19 pandemic has stamped its success with a successful initial public offering (IPO). It's Cue Health , a little-known startup from San Diego that rapidly switched its focus to making Covid-19 testing kits on the onset of the pandemic and has built a big business with that. Cue Health debuted on the Nasdaq exchange on Friday, the 24th of September, raising $200mn before commissions and other underwriting expenses. Its stock climbed 25% on that day to end trading at $20, giving it a market cap of $2.9bn . Cue Health is one of the significant startup success stories to emerge from the pandemic. Before it started providing Covid testing kits, its annual sales were numbered in the low-digit millions but shot up to $23mn in 2020  on the pandemic's onset and $202mn in the first half of 2021 . Because of its fast pivot to providing Covid testing kits, Cue Health was an early mover. Thus, it got lucrative testing contr

Earnings: Nike's Sales Falter, Shares Drop 6%

Sports apparel giant Nike has dropped its latest quarterly results , showing that its earnings still stand firm despite sales challenges intensified by the Covid pandemic. But though its earnings beat analyst expectations, Nike's stock fell by a significant percentage during trading on Friday due to its sales outlook. Nike posted $12.2bn in sales in the three months ended August 31, 2021, its fiscal 2022 first quarter. Sales were up 12% year-over-year and slightly unchanged from $12.3bn in the preceding quarter. Nike's sales have dropped significantly due to the Covid pandemic that led to widespread closures of its physical retail centers. Even as the pandemic effects gradually wear off, the company is still battling supply chain disruptions caused by it. As usual, most of Nike's quarterly sales came from the  Nike brand ( $11.6bn ), while a minority was from the Converse brand ( $630mn ). For the quarter, Nike's net profit was $1.9bn , up 23% year-over-year and 27%

Deal: Hollywood Agency CAA To Buy Rival ICM

In a historic deal in the talent agency industry, two of the biggest entertainment and sports talent agencies operating in the US are about to merge to become one. It's so that Creative Artists Agency (CAA) , a powerhouse talent agency with a roster of stars, has reached a deal to buy ICM Partners , a rival powerhouse agency. CAA buying ICM is a blockbuster deal that'll see two of Hollywood's most powerful talent agencies merge into one more robust powerhouse. The combined agency would be a more formidable one for arch-rivals such as William Morris Endeavor (WME) and United Talent Agency (UTA) . Normally, CAA, ICM, WME, and UTA are considered the "big four" talent agencies in Hollywood and sports, representing the most significant share of A-list talent across both industries. Now, it appears that the "big four" would soon become the "big three."  CAA is the bigger of the two agencies, commanding a bigger roster of talent and business than IC