Some notes to kick off your Monday…
• Coming attractions: Payments company Square is planning to file its public IPO registration documents (i.e., S-1) within the next two weeks, as Fortune first reported on Friday afternoon. Word is that there is still some skittishness at Square HQ about macro economic issues (e.g., Chinese economy, Fed raising rates, super blood moon actually turning into a fireball hurtling toward Earth), but it does appear that Square wants to be the rare unicorn to go out in 2015.
This might also give us some insight into when Twitter will name its full-time CEO, as it’s hard to imagine Square going on a road-show without a resolution to Jack Dorsey’s status. I’m hearing near-unanimity from Silicon Valley sources that Twitter will soon drop the “interim” part of Dorsey’s title, which means he’ll try to lead two public companies at the same time. Perhaps not too surprising given his well-known idolization of Steve Jobs, who simultaneously led publicly-listed Apple and Pixar.
• Speaking of IPOs: It looks like we might have our first double-digit pricing week since late June. Research firm Renaissance Capital reports that there are 11 companies slated to list on U.S. exchanges over the next five days, highlighted a Performance Foods Group offering that could raise over $340 million.
• Just asking: It seems we’re just hours away from Anheuser-Busch InBev offering to buy SAB Miller in a $106 billion beer merger. What does this mean for M&A activity in the below-behemoth categories? Not just regulator-forced divestitures (presuming approval in the first place), but all of the mid-sized brands that already fight for tap and shelf space against InBev and Miller products? If you’re in this space, please let me know your thoughts.
• Shudder: Today’s top venture capital deal was led by private equity firm J.C. Flowers, in what seems to be its first-ever startup deal. One of the smaller ones — a $6.5 million Series A round — included The Blackstone Group. Even if both of these companies turn into unicorns in the field, today they are canaries in the coal-mine.
• Résumé revision: Newly-released documents show that former Hewlett-Packard chairman Ray Lane tried to kill HP’s $11 billion acquisition of Autonomy in 2011, but apparently flagged the train a bit too late. The deal, of course, resulted in HP’s then-CEO to be fired and all sorts of subsequent litigation and write-downs.
Pretty good timing on the revelations for Lane, who has seen his reputation damaged by both HP’s performance and some of his high-priced cleantech investments while a partner with Kleiner Perkins (not to mention his less-than-flattering mentions in Ellen Pao’s lawsuit). Word is that he’s at least partially involved on a new VC fundraise alongside Andrew Perlman (CEO of KPCB portfolio company GreatPoint Energy) and Nate Laurell (Chicago-based real estate and energy exec). Yes, that makes Lane the answer to a recent Quiz Time. Neither he nor Perlman or Laurell returned requests for comment.
• Brainstorm E: Fortune’s flagship energy and environment conference, Fortune Brainstorm E, kicks off from Austin, Texas today at 2pm local time. We’ll be streaming all of it at Fortune.com, and today’s interview subjects include Dan Bartlett (Walmart), Christine Todd Whitman, Nancy Pfund (DBL Partners), Michael Eckhart (Citi’s head of environmental finance), Tom Werner (CEO of SunPower), Eric Spiegel (CEO of Siemens USA) and Walter Robb (co-CEO of Whole Foods… which made some other news today). Full agenda is available here.
• In memoriam: Richard Rainwater, a Texas investor who was influential in the founding of TPG Capital and other private equity firms, has passed away at the age of 71. Since 2009 he had battled a rare neurological disease called Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, which was detailed in this 2011 Fortune article.
Here is some of what TPG co-founder David Bonderman said in that piece about Rainwater: “He may be the best deal guy ever… I learned everything I know from sitting in Richard’s office and watching how he operated. I figured out what would work for me and what wouldn’t.”
THE BIG DEAL
• Walker & Company Brands, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based maker of health and beauty products for people of color, has raised $24 million in Series B funding. Institutional Venture Partners led the round, and was joined by return backers Andreessen Horowitz, Upfront Ventures, Daher Capital, Collaborative Fund, Google Ventures, Felicis Ventures, and Melo7 Tech Partners. Walker & Co. also announced a distribution deal with Target for its flagship Bevel shaving product. Read more.
VENTURE CAPITAL DEALS
• Wheels Up Partners LLC, a membership-based luxury airline, has raised $115 million in new VC funding at a $540 million post-money valuation, led by T. Rowe Price, according to the WSJ. Read more.
• Kreditech, a German developer of credit and banking products for people with little to no credit history, has raised €82.5 million in Series C funding. J.C. Flowers led the round, and was joined by Amadeus Capital Partners, Peter Thiel and return backers Värde Partners, HPE Growth Capital and Blumberg Capital. www.kreditech.comhttp://www.kreditech.com
• Acquia, a Burlington, Mass.-based provider of digital business optimization solutions, has raised $55 million in new VC funding. Centerview Capital Technology led the round, and was joined by return backers NEA and Split Rock Partners. www.acquia.com
• Collibra, an automated data management startup with offices in New York and Brussels, has raised $23 million in new VC funding from firms like Dawn Capital and Index Ventures. www.collibra.com
• Wayin, a Denver-based provider of real-time digital marketing software, has raised $15.4 million in new VC funding. An undisclosed investor led the round, and was joined by David Duffield and return backers U.S. Venture Partners, Hasso Plattner and Scott McNealy. www.wayin.com
• Paintzen, a New York-based on-demand interior or exterior painting service, has raised $7.2 million in new VC funding led by Bullpen Capital. Read more.
• Phantom Cyber, an Atlanta-based provider of security automation and orchestration solutions, has raised $6.5 million in Series A funding from The Blackstone Group, TechOperators, Rein Capital, Zach Nelson (NetSuite CEO) and John Thompson (ex-Symantec CEO). www.phantom.us
• Ometria, a London-based customer insight and marketing platform for retailers, has raised $2.5 million in new VC funding. Inventure Partners led the round, and was joined by Force Over Mass Capital and return backer SaatchInvest. Read more.
• Ola, an Indian ride-hailing company, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Chinese ride-hailing company Didi Kuaidi. Read more.
PRIVATE EQUITY DEALS
• Apax Partners has agreed to acquire an undisclosed stake in Ideal Protein, a Canada-based weight loss and wellness solutions company. No financial terms were disclosed. www.idealprotein.com
• Ardian has raised its equity stake in CLH Group, a Spanish oil products and storage company, from 15% to 25%. No financial terms were disclosed. The new shares were purchased from Repsol (CATS: REP). www.clh.es
• Ares Management and Harvest Partners have acquired Valet Waste, a Tampa, Fla.-based provider of amenity services to the multifamily housing industry, from New Mountain Capital. No financial terms were disclosed. www.valetwaste.com
• IHS (NYSE: IHS) is prepping a rival bid for Solera Holdings Inc. (NYSE: SLH), which last week agreed to be acquired by Vista Equity Partners for $6.5 billion (including debt), according to Reuters. Read more.
• Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) completed its previously-announced sale of the Splenda sweetener business to Carmel, Ind.-based Heartland Food Products Group, which was sponsored on the deal by Centerbridge Partners. No financial terms were disclosed, except that Splenda generated around $370 million in 2014 sales. www.heartlandfpg.com
• Koch Equity Development and BDT Capital Partners have agreed to acquire a stake in Truck-Lite, a -based provider of safety lighting and filtration systems for commercial vehicles, from Kelso & Co. Existing Truck-Lite shareholder Penske Corp. will retain an ownership position. No financial terms were disclosed. www.truck-lite.com
• AquaVenture Holdings, a Tampa, Fla.-based provider of wastewater treatment and purification services and systems, has filed for a $100 million IPO. It plans to trade on the NYSE under ticker symbol WAAS, with Citigroup, Deutsche Bank and RBC Capital Markets serving as lead underwriters. The company reports nearly a $5.6 million net loss on $47 million in revenue for the first six months of 2015. Shareholders include Element Partners and the Virgin Green Fund. www.aquaventure.com
Equiniti, a British outsourcing group owned by Advent International, is prepping a London IPO that would raise around £350 million value the company at around £1 billion, according to Sky News. Read more.
Ibstock, a British clay brick maker owned by Bain Capital, said it plans to raise £100 million in a London IPO. Earlier reports suggested that the float could value Ibstock at around $1.6 billion. Read more.
• Alcoa (NYSE: AA), an $11.8 billion metals conglomerate, said that it will split into a pair of publicly-listed companies, one focused on commodities (retaining the Alcoa name) and focused on newer products that are supplied to the aerospace industry. Read more.
• Burger King France, majority owned by Groupe Bertrand, has agreed to acquire French fast-food chain Quick Restaurants SA and convert Quick restaurants in France into Burger King stores. No financial terms were disclosed. The seller is and Qualium Investissement. www.quick-restaurants.com
• Cabot Microelectronics Corp. (Nasdaq:CCMP) has agreed to acquire NexPlanar Corp., a Hillsboro, Ore.-based developer of CMP pad solutions for the semiconductor industry. The deal is valued at around $142 million. NexPlanar has raised around $40 million in VC funding from firms like Intel Capital, BlueRun Ventures, ATEL Ventures and InterWest Partners. www.nexplanar.com
• Kraton Performance Polymers Inc. (NYSE: KRA) has agreed to acquire Arizona Chemicals Holding Corp., a Jacksonville, Fla.-based maker of pine chemicals, from American Securities for $1.37 billion in cash. www.kraton.com
• NBCUniversal, a unit of Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCS), has agreed to acquire a 51% stake in Universal Studios Japan for around $1.5 billion from an investor consortium that includes Goldman Sachs, MBK Partners and PAG. The deal values Universal Studios Japan at around $6.2 billion, including debt. Read more.
• Royal Dutch Shell said it will stop drilling for oil off the Alaskan coast “for the foreseeable future” and take a financial charge, after initial exploration results failed to live up to expectations. Read more.
• Allianz (DB: ALV) is “considering offloading a significant chunk of its multibillion-euro portfolio of old insurance policies,” according to the FT. Read more.
• Barclays (LSE: BARC) is launching an auction process for parts of its Brazilian investment banking business, according to Sky News. Read more.
• Cypress Semiconductor (Nasdaq: CY) is prepping a rival takeover bid for San Jose, Calif.-based chipmaker Atmel (Nasdaq: ATML),, which recently agreed to sell itself to Dialog Semiconductor (XTRA: DLG) for approximately $4.6 billion in cash and stock, according to Reuters. Read more.
• Vodafone Group PLC (LSE: VOD) said that it has ended preliminary discussions with Liberty Global PLC (Nasdaq: LBTY) around a possible exchange of assets. Read more.
FIRMS & FUNDS
• Accel-KKR, a Menlo Park, Calif.-based private equity firm focused on middle-market software and IT-enabled services companies, has closed its fifth fund with $1.3 billion in capital commitments. www.accel-kkr.com
• KSL Capital Partners, a private equity and real estate investment firm focused on the travel and leisure space, has closed its fourth flagship fund with $2.677 billion in capital commitments. www.kslcapital.com
• TSG Consumer Partners is targeting $2 billion for its seventh flagship fund (which will have a 25% carried interest structure), according to Dow Jones. It also will seek a 500 million fund for smaller deals. www.tsgconsumer.com
MOVING IN, UP, ON & OUT
• Simon Brown has agreed to join Lion Capital as chief operating officer. He previously was CFO and chief risk officer at Equistone. www.lioncapital.com
• Scott Gluck has joined Duane Morris as a Washington, D.C.-based member in the law firm’s corporate practice group, which a focused on “the regulatory, compliance and corporate activities of private equity firms.” He previously served as outside regulatory counsel for the Association for Corporate Growth. www.duanemorris.com
• Michael Mascia and Wesley Mission have joined law firm Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP as partners focused on fund finance. Mascia previously was co-head of Mayer Brown’s global lending practice, while Mission also was with Mayer Brown. www.cadwalader.com
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