(Adds Cell C, Nexi, Jupiter Fund Management, Vodacom, Sanlorenzo, Ethio Telecom; Updates Lufthansa)
May 21 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2000 GMT on Thursday:
** Italian payments firms Nexi and SIA are exchanging confidential information as they explore a possible tie-up to create an Italian powerhouse in the sector, three sources familiar with the matter said.
** Italian luxury boat maker Sanlorenzo said it was considering buying a majority stake in sailing brand Perini Navi to boost its market share in the superyacht segment.
** The Ethiopian government will sell a 40% stake in Ethio Telecom, a monopoly operator, as part of the country’s plans for opening one of the world’s last major closed telecoms markets, State Minister of Finance Eyob Tekalign Tolina told Reuters.
** Vodacom Group said it has simplified its structure and created a standalone South African business as it seeks to manage its already expanded African footprint and grow further.
** British asset manager Jupiter Fund Management said shareholders had approved its proposed acquisition of smaller rival Merian Global Investors, with about 95% of votes cast in favour of the deal at a general meeting.
** South Africa’s third-biggest telecom operator, Cell C, plans to hive off assets into a new special purpose vehicle (SPV), the country’s competition watchdog said, as part of a plan to restructure the company’s debt.
** SoftBank Group Corp said it plans to sell 5% of its domestic telco SoftBank Corp, currently worth $3.1 billion, as part of a programme to raise $41 billion through asset sales.
** Greencoat Capital has agreed to buy a 156 megawatt (MW) portfolio of solar assets in Britain from investment management firm BlackRock Real Assets and solar energy developer Lightsource BP, it said.
** Lufthansa is in advanced talks over a 9 billion euros ($9.9 billion) state bailout that would see Germany take a 20% stake in its flagship airline, as countries battle to save an aviation industry hammered by the coronavirus pandemic.
** Forescout Technologies Inc sued Advent International Corp on Wednesday, after the private equity firm pulled out of a deal to buy the U.S. cybersecurity company for $1.9 billion. (Compiled by C Nivedita and Shanti S Nair in Bengaluru)