(Adds Nokia, Ryanair, Rosneft, Energy Transfer Equity, Axis Capital Holdings, Telekom Slovenia; Updates Royal Dutch, Potash Corp)
July 8 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Wednesday:
** Brazil gave the green light to oil major Royal Dutch Shell to buy smaller rival BG, advancing the $70 billion merger — the largest of the past decade — closer to completion in early 2016.
** Britain plans to sell at least three quarters of its stake in Royal Bank of Scotland over the next five years, raising 25 billion pounds ($38 billion), the body that manages the government’s stake in the bank said.
** Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc does not plan to sweeten its bid for German rival K+S AG, several people familiar with the Canadian mineral miner said, downplaying a media report that it would consider such a move.
** Software security company Symantec Corp is in talks to sell its Veritas data storage business to private equity firm Carlyle Group LP, a person familiar with the matter said on Tuesday. The exact status of the talks could not be learned. Bloomberg had earlier reported, citing sources, that Symantec was nearing a deal to sell Veritas to Carlyle for $7-$8 billion.
** Germany’s big car makers have reached a stand-off with Nokia in their joint bid to buy the Finnish company’s maps business HERE, while rival offers appear to be unravelling, sources familiar with the process said.
** Ryanair’s board is due to meet to review IAG’s proposed takeover of Aer Lingus and will likely decide whether to sell its 30 percent stake over the next week or two, its chief executive said on Wednesday.
** Russia’s top oil producer Rosneft has made a significant step in its efforts to expand its global reach by signing a preliminary deal with Essar Group about acquiring up to 49 percent of the Vadinar oil refinery in India.
** Pipeline company Energy Transfer Equity LP said it was open to take part in Williams Companies Inc’s strategic review despite having a takeover offer rebuffed, but only if the process was “fair” and not designed to disadvantage Energy Transfer.
** Reinsurers Axis Capital Holdings Ltd and PartnerRe Ltd are considering tweaking their $6.2 billion merger agreement in a bid to fend off a $6.8 billion offer for PartnerRe by Exor SpA, people familiar with the matter said.
** Macedonia’s market regulator said on Wednesday it had approved the sale of Telekom Slovenia’s Macedonian unit to Telekom Austria, a move that could pave the way for completing the privatisation of the Slovenian parent.
** An advisory firm recommended South Korea’s National Pension Service (NPS) vote against a proposed $8 billion merger of two Samsung Group companies, a deal seen as critical to a leadership transfer at the country’s top conglomerate. NPS is the is the biggest single shareholder in takeover target Samsung C&T Corp
The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, which holds a small stake C&T, said it was voting against the takeover offer by Cheil Industries Inc.
** U.S. health insurer Humana Inc and buyer Aetna Inc set fees to be paid in the event of a failure of the largest deal in the health insurance industry. Aetna, which said last week it would buy Humana for about $37 billion in cash and stock, has to pay a termination fee of $1.69 billion, Humana said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday. Humana would pay its larger rival $1.31 billion if the deal is terminated.
** Sports betting and gaming company GVC Holdings Plc has offered to buy bigger rival Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment Plc for about 900 million pounds ($1.39 billion), the Financial Times reported on Tuesday.
** Brazilian investment firm Tarpon Investimentos hired Morgan Stanley & Co to explore a sale of healthcare products supplier Cremer SA, three sources with knowledge of the situation said on Tuesday. Tarpon, which owns 96 percent of Cremer, launched a formal sale process aimed especially at foreign bidders, said the sources.
** The Federal Reserve Board approved BB&T Corp’s $2.5 billion acquisition of Susquehanna Bancshares Inc, signaling a softening stance on finance M&A.
** Spain’s biggest bank Santander has hired consultants PricewaterhouseCoopers to help it sell a package of soured home loans worth just under 800 million euros ($883 million), a source with knowledge of the deal said.
** A Chinese state-backed investment firm sold its stake in China’s fourth-largest broker Haitong Securities in Hong Kong in a sign that Beijing’s bid to arrest a sell-off in mainland stocks is pushing investors to the island’s market to raise capital.
** Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd is investing about S$279 million ($205.98 million) to expand its holdings in Singapore Post Ltd (SingPost) and its e-commerce unit, the two companies said.
** Fosun International Ltd said it has offered to buy German private bank Hauck & Aufhäuser Privatbankiers KGaA (H&A) for up to 210 million euros ($231.17 million), aiming to boost its services in Europe.
** French state-controlled utility EDF’s planned takeover of the nuclear reactor arm of Areva could hit Areva’s order book as utilities may not want to buy equipment from another utility, a parliament report released on Wednesday said.
** German airport operator Fraport is selling 51 percent of its freight handling unit Fraport Cargo Services (FCS) to freight and ground services firm Worldwide Flight Services (WFS), it said.
** Canadian law firm Gowlings has agreed to merge with Britain’s Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co LLP in a deal that could lead to further international expansion, the two firms said.
** Russian consumer credit firm TCS Group said it had bought an additional part of the credit card loan portfolio of Russian bank Svyaznoy Bank. ($1 = 0.6491 pounds) ($1 = 1.3550 Singapore dollars) ($1 = 0.9084 euros) (Compiled by Natalie Grover and Lehar Maan in Bengaluru)