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Last year was notable for mergers and acquisitions

As Moorestown residents may agree, 2016 was a landmark year for mergers and acquisitions. While some may have concerns about how these mergers will affect the market and competition, others may see them as evidence that the nation's economy is rebounding. The following are five major mergers and acquisitions that took place in 2016.

One notable acquisition was that between Qualcomm and NXP Semiconductors. Qualcomm, based out San Diego, bought the Dutch manufacturing company for approximately $47 billion. This acquisition was one of the largest semiconductor deals ever made.

Another notable merger was that between Energy Transfer Partners and Sunco Logistics Partners. The merger constituted a bid by the two companies to lower both their operating expenses and borrowing costs. In this merger, Sunco, in an all-stock deal, bought out Energy Transfer Partners for $21 billion. It is hoped that the merger will save the new business entity more than $200 million per year by 2019.

A third notable acquisition that began in 2016, but is still pending, is between British American Tobacco and Reynolds American. In the acquisition, British American Tobacco offered $47 billion in cash and stock to Reynolds American. British American Tobacco had owned 42 percent of Reynolds American prior to the acquisition, but the acquisition would allow it to obtain the remaining 58 percent.

At $66 billion, in what would be the second largest merger in 2016, Bayer announced it would purchase Monsanto. This deal meant that the combined business entity would control over 25 percent of the world's supply of pesticides and seeds. In December, Monsanto shareholders approved the acquisition, but it is pending regulatory approval.

Finally, there is the business merger between AT&T and Time Warner. This $85.4 billion merger received a lot of media attention, due to the influence the merger would have on the ways consumers obtain information and entertainment.

As this shows, 2016 was a busy year for high-stakes mergers and acquisitions. While these notable business deals garner a lot of media attention, smaller mergers and acquisitions take place nationwide on a regular basis. These business deals are legally complex affairs, however, so consulting with an attorney may be a good idea for companies who desire to enter into such deals.

Source: Fortune, "Here Are the 5 Biggest M&A Deals of 2016," Lucinda Shen, Dec. 28, 2016

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