Noteworthy expenditures of the week
It's not often that you see a stuffed animal priced in the six digits. Trigger, the golden Palomino that was Roy Rogers' sidekick, fetched $266,500 at a Christie's auction in New York. The buyer was Patrick Gottsch, founder of RFD-TV, a TV network aimed at rural America. Gottsch also paid $35,000 for Rogers' German shepherd, Bullet.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has agreed to pay over $1 billion to resolve more than 800 cases alleging that its Paxil antidepressant caused birth defects in some users' children, according to people familiar with the settlements. That works out to an average of $1.2 million per family. Some 100 cases are still outstanding. The drugmaker has set aside $2.4 billion to resolve litigation over Paxil and its Avandia diabetes drug, which allegedly poses increased risks of heart attacks and strokes.
Reckitt Benckiser is buying condom maker SSL International for $3.9 billion. Reckitt, a maker of household cleaners and over-the-counter drugs, is on a hunt for new sources of revenue because its fastest-growing product, heroin addiction drug Suboxone, will soon face competition from generic versions.
Airlines: $9.1 bn
Emirates announced an order for 30 Boeing (BA) 777-300ER aircraft at the Farnborough International Airshow. The Arab world's largest carrier is racing to expand its fleet of long-range jets as part of a plan to boost Dubai as a global air hub. Last month it ordered 32 A380 superjumbos from Airbus.
In a $6.7 billion shopping spree at the end of July, Washington-based buyout firm Carlyle Group announced three deals over five days. Here's the itemized receipt: $3.8 billion for NBTY (NTY), a Ronkonkoma (N.Y.)-based maker of vitamins and health supplements; $1.2 billion for Brazilian health-care company Grupo Qualicorp; and, together with TPG, $1.7 billion for Australian hospital chain Healthscope.
Oil: $7.0 bn
BP (BP), the British oil major battling a record oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, agreed to sell assets worth $7 billion in North America and Egypt to Apache (APA). BP has said it will sell some $10 billion of assets over 12 months to fund compensation for damages from the accident.
London-based Candover Partners is selling Belgian diaper maker Ontex for $1.6 billion to TPG and Goldman Sachs Group's (GS) private equity arm. Hard hit by the credit crunch, Candover shut down its leveraged buyout fund in January amid a cash shortage and is in the midst of negotiations to sell itself to a Canadian pension fund.
Nokia Siemens Networks, the world's second-largest maker of wireless phone systems, is spending $1.2 billion to buy wireless network assets from Motorola (MOT). The deal will give the Finnish-German joint venture a bigger foothold in North America and Japan. Motorola is selling the business as part of a breakup plan that will see the struggling Schaumburg (Ill.)-based company spin off its mobile-phone and set-top box operations into a separate company.
Four magnums of Château Latour from the Bordeaux producer's historic 1961 vintage fetched $52,426 at a Sotheby's (BID) auction of fine wines in London. The 1961 Latour rates a perfect 100-point score from American wine critic Robert Parker.