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Deals of the day- Mergers and acquisitions

(Adds Potash, Bain, Allergan; Updates Rabobank)

Sept 20 The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Tuesday

** Italian oil major ENI SpA has delayed the planned $3.4 billion sale of its domestic retail business, sources said, as political uncertainty caused by an upcoming referendum on democratic reform hinders major deals across the country.

** Plunging crop and fertilizer prices may not have hit rock bottom yet, and the market's weakness makes it the right time to merge leading farm input suppliers, the chief executive officer of Agrium Inc said, making his pitch to skeptical investors for a $26 billion union with Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc.

** Private equity firm Bain Capital has agreed to a debt for equity swap deal valued at $1.5 billion for Edcon, the chief executive of the South African clothes retailer said.

** Chinese antitrust regulators approved Marriott International Inc's deal to buy Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc, clearing the way for the combined company to become the world's largest hotel chain.

** India's biggest refiner Indian Oil Corp Ltd and gas transporter Gail (India) Ltd are set to take a stake in a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal being built in the eastern state of Odisha.

** Allergan Plc said it would buy Tobira Therapeutics Inc in a deal worth up to $1.7 billion, about 19 times the company's current value, to get a leg up in the race to develop therapies for NASH, an incurable fatty liver disease.

** A unit of India's Adani Enterprises Ltd will buy the company that operates Australia's Abbot Point Coal Terminal from Glencore Plc for A$19.25 million ($14.52 million), ending a legal wrangle over control of the port.

** Tessera Technologies Inc, which licenses technology mainly to the semiconductor industry, said it would buy DTS Inc, a provider of audio technology for mobile devices, home theater systems and cars, for about $850 million in cash.

** The chief executive of Swiss specialty chemicals company Sika AG does not see an amicable solution to Saint-Gobain's hostile takeover attempt, now mired in Swiss courts, and will quit if it goes ahead, he said.

** New Zealand approved the sale of a 50 percent stake in the country's largest meat processor Silver Fern Farms to a unit of China's Bright Food Group, enhancing the South Island-based company's access into the Chinese market.

** German drugmaker Bayer said its two best-selling drugs had a higher annual peak sales potential than previously targeted, after the agreed $66 billion takeover of Monsanto stirred criticism it might neglect its pharmaceuticals business.

** China's Baosteel Iron and Steel will acquire its smaller debt-laden rival, Wuhan Iron and Steel, in a deal that will create one of the world's largest steel producers.

** Rabobank, the Dutch cooperative bank, said it had sold its real estate financing unit RNHB Bank to CarVal Investors and Arrow Global.

** Grab, the biggest rival to ride-sharing service Uber Technologies Inc in Southeast Asia, has raised $750 million in a funding round, turning up the heat on the U.S. firm now seeking to expand in the region after exiting China.

** Lufthansa's maintenance unit and MTU Aero Engines AG are looking into the possibility of setting up a joint company to provide maintenance, repair and overhaul of aircraft engines.

** Renault SA and Nissan Motor Co announced they would buy French software development company Sylpheo as they compete with global automakers and tech firms to develop new services including ride hailing and car sharing.

** Dubai Aerospace Enterprise, an aircraft leasing and maintenance company controlled by the government of Dubai, said it had agreed to buy an 80 percent stake in Jordan Aircraft Maintenance Ltd.

($1 = 1.3667 New Zealand dollars)

($1 = 0.8950 euros)

(Compiled by John Benny)

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