Depending on your perspective, Insurance Australia Group and Wesfarmers can be considered prime examples of what happens when takeovers go wrong. IAG’s share price has struggled since rebuffing QBE’s Frank O’Halloran, while Wesfarmers boss Richard Goyder famously came under enormous pressure after saddling the WA-based conglomerate with an enormous debt burden to buy Coles – more than it was worth – just before the GFC. You’d have to argue that Goyder’s decision is looking better and better by the day, but speculation has emerged that Wesfarmers is having a look at IAG. If it’s true, has either company learnt from the past? Meanwhile, it appears increasingly likely that Nine Entertainment will end up in the hands of its bankers just like Kerry Stokes foretold, with the latest CVC Asia Pacific debt deal getting another cold reception. Elsewhere, Qantas Airways says its Kuala Lumpur plans are still alive despite new moves from Malaysia Airlines, a TPG Telecom-iiNet merger has a new champion and Austar is getting its papers in order for a Foxtel merger.
Insurance Australia Group, Wesfarmers