(Adds ArcLight, Aramco, Saur, Mansfelder Kupfer, Gemalto; Updates Apollo)
July 23 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Monday:
** The British infrastructure arm of Kuwait’s sovereign wealth fund said it had agreed to buy oil and gas pipeline firm North Sea Midstream Partners from private equity firm ArcLight Capital.
** JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley have been picked to advise on Saudi Aramco’s plan to buy a controlling stake in petrochemical maker SABIC, several sources familiar with the matter said.
** French water group Saur has started exclusive takeover talks with the Swedish EQT Infrastructure fund, the two companies said in separate statements.
** The European Commission said it had started an in-depth investigation into German copper producer KME’s purchase of German peer Mansfelder Kupfer und Messing, noting it was concerned such a deal would reduce competition.
** The European Commission said it had opened an in-depth investigation into the 4.8-billion-euro ($5.62 billion) purchase of digital security company Gemalto by French aeronautics and space group Thales.
** China’s SDIC will buy Canadian fertiliser supplier Nutrien’s 28 percent stake in Arab Potash Co for $502 million, the Chinese state-owned company said, continuing its overseas expansion.
** Apollo Global Management will buy LifePoint Health in a $5.6 billion deal that will expand its rural U.S. hospitals business, the latest in a series of bets by private equity firms on healthcare.
** U.S. private equity firm Blackstone Group has secured EU antitrust approval to acquire a majority stake in Thomson Reuters’ Financial and Risk unit, the European Commission said.
** AccorHotels is joining forces with Qatar’s Katara Hospitality to create a $1 billion fund to invest in sub-Sahara Africa, Europe’s biggest hotels operator said.
** Online payment company PayU, a subsidiary of Naspers , said it agreed to acquire Israeli payment technology provider Zooz to support its expansion in high-growth markets.
** Saudi Aramco aims to buy a controlling stake in petrochemical maker SABIC, possibly taking the entire 70 percent stake owned by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
** The British infrastructure arm of Kuwait’s sovereign wealth fund has agreed to buy oil and gas pipeline firm North Sea Midstream Partners (NSMP) for around 1.3 billion pounds ($1.7 billion) from ArcLight Capital, Reuters reported citing two sources.
** Papa John’s International Inc on Sunday adopted a shareholder rights plan, or a “poison pill”, with a 15 percent trigger to deter existing stockholders from amassing a controlling stake in the company.
** Australian conglomerate Wesfarmers Ltd said on Sunday it will take a smaller-than-expected stake in supermarket chain Coles when it demerges in November, but will hang on to half of a loyalty card programme to keep its hands on shoppers’ data.
** A consortium led by KKR & Co agreed to acquire Taipei-listed LCY Chemical Corp in a $1.56 billion stock deal, the companies said on Sunday, marking it the U.S. private equity firm’s first deal in the island in more than a decade.
** Australian No. 1 toll road operator Transurban Group said on Sunday it has bid for a 51 percent stake in the country’s biggest transport infrastructure project, a A$16.8 billion ($12.4 billion) tollway through the middle of Sydney.
** French IT services company Atos is boosting its North American operations with a $3.4 billion cash deal to buy Michigan-based IT services provider Syntel Inc.
** The chief executive of Airbus said he was open to a merger of his firm’s jet fighter business with that of BAE Systems, the Sunday Times reported on Saturday.
** Chinese conglomerates Alibaba and Tencent are involved in talks to buy a minority stake in advertising giant WPP’s Chinese unit, Sky News reported on Saturday, citing unidentified sources.
** Aerospace parts maker Esterline Technologies Corp is exploring a potential sale, two people familiar with the matter said. (Compiled by Sanjana Shivdas and Aakash Jagadeesh Babu in Bengaluru)