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BAE Systems Bags Ball Corp’s Sky-High Tech for a Cool $5.55 Billion!

Ah, the world of business, always full of twists and turns! So, get this: BAE Systems from good ol’ Britain didn’t waste a second on Thursday, diving right in and grabbing Ball Corp’s space gadgets for a whopping $5.55 billion cash deal. Yep, they’ve got their hands on some major U.S. goodies involved in the serious stuff like national security.

Back in July, the grapevine had it that some heavy-hitting equity firms, including Blackstone and Veritas Capital, were jostling with big defense names like BAE, General Dynamics, and Textron. They were all eyeing Ball Corp’s prize.

Now, Ball Corp might ring a bell as the kingpin of beer cans. But, guess what? They’re not splurging that money on more cans! Nope, they’re smartening up, slashing their $9.7 billion debt, giving back to their loyal investors, and fueling their global box biz.

Meanwhile, BAE, the top dog in Britain’s defense scene, is scheming to fund this massive purchase by mixing new loans with some spare change. They’re itching to get Ball’s starry-eyed tech, from building spaceships to designing gadgets that, believe it or not, can keep tabs on our ever-changing weather. Wild, right?

But it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows for BAE, with their stocks dipping 3% by morning. Some folks, like the brainy bunch led by Chloe Lemarie at Jefferies, gave it a nod, although with a “bit pricey” eyebrow raise.

Everyone’s eagerly watching the calendar, hoping to see this deal sealed by mid-2024. With the promise of fattening up their earnings and margins, BAE’s looking forward to a brighter future.

Oh, and speaking of the future, BAE’s had quite the ride lately. They’re cashing in on the world’s growing love for military gear. Charles Woodburn, the big cheese at BAE, was over the moon, saying, “It’s not every day you find such a gem, so perfect for our game plan.”

The company’s game is strong. They’re zeroing in on crucial defense and intelligence needs. And guess what? They’ve also let the cat out of the bag, confirming a juicy $1.91 billion share buyback. Quite the feather in their cap!

Over in Colorado, the aerospace hub that’s now in BAE’s sights was no small fry either. Last year, it raked in nearly $2 billion, making up a chunky slice (13% to be exact) of Ball’s sales pie.

Oh, and for those keeping score at home: the deal’s got a little tax twist to it. But don’t worry, the big brains at Morgan Stanley are guiding Ball Corp through the maze.

(Exchange rate tip for the money geeks: $1 is about 0.7856 pounds. Neat, huh?)

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