In brief

* Sterlite Technologies Ltd is in advanced discussions to acquire UK-based cabling company Brand Rex for about US$55m. The acquisition, advised on by PricewaterhouseCoopers, could be unveiled about four weeks after completion of formalities.

Sterlite Technologies declined to comment on the report. “As a company policy we do not comment on market speculation or market rumours,” a spokesman told Reuters.

Sterlite Tech is part of Anil Agarwal’s Sterlite Group, and manufactures optic fibre cables and power conductors.

Brand-Rex provides cabling systems that connect technical equipment in offices and data centres. It was acquired by Murray Capital, the private equity arm of Murray International Holdings, in February 2008.

* Dutch insurer Eureko said on September 12 that it had agreed to buy Russian peer Oranta from private equity firm PromSvyazCapital (PSC) for an undisclosed sum to expand its position in Central and Eastern Europe.

Eureko, partly owned by unlisted Rabobank, said in a statement that the deal was subject to regulatory approval, among other conditions. Oranta is ranked 23rd in the Russian insurance sector, based on gross written premiums. Its main business focus is motor insurance and it also offers property insurance, said Eureko, which operates in 12 European countries including Turkey, where it bought an insurer last year.

Russia’s economic growth, consolidating insurance sector and other factors offered opportunities to develop Eureko’s growth strategy in the country, the company said.

* Troubled Spanish property firm Colonial said on September 15 that it had no timetable or specific prices for its planned sale of non-core assets. Speaking at a press conference, Colonial managing director Pere Vinolas Serra said the non-core assets under the hammer were worth about €2bn (US$2.8bn).

Colonial said it had reached an agreement with its creditors to refinance a total of about €7bn of debt, including a syndicated loan of about €6.5bn. The agreement includes the sale of a 15% stake in Spanish builder FCC, 33% of French property company SFL and all of its fully owned Riofisa property firm.

Vinolas Serra said private equity firm Carlyle had expressed a possible interest in Riofisa, while there were also many people interested in FCC.