Working your way up is overrated. Companies are increasingly just buying their way to the top of global markets.
BABY FOOD TASTES SWEET
In an all-cash, $5.5 billion deal, Nestlé will buy the Gerber baby-food business from Swiss pharma giant Novartis. The purchase catapults Nestlé to the top of the U.S. baby-food market.
In what would be the largest financial-services merger ever, Britain's Barclays PLC bid for the Netherlands' largest bank, ABN Amro NV, for $91.16 billion. The result: a worldwide banking giant with 47 million customers.
To enter into the vaccines market and strengthen its foothold in future drug sales, British pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca is snapping up MedImmune of Gaithersburg, Md., for a cool $15.6 billion.
RETAILING IN RIO
Europe's biggest retailer, Paris-based Carrefour SA, will add 34 superstores in Brazil to its roster and become that country's largest retailer (in revenue) once it purchases Atacadao for $1.1 billion.
In order to obtain mines and exploration properties in Kazakhstan, SXR Uranium One bought Canada-based UrAsia Energy for some $3.1 billion, creating the second largest uranium company in the world.