U.S. stock futures jumped on Tuesday as investors await data of the National Association of Realtors’ existing home sales for May and the non-manufacturing business data of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. Both sets of data are scheduled to be released today. Furthermore, the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond is set to release the results of its monthly survey of manufacturing activity today.
S&P, Dow, and Nasdaq futures were in the green at the time of writing, with 0.1%, 0.1%, and 0.3% higher trading, respectively.
Torchlight Energy Resources (TRCH) was the most actively traded stock in pre-market trading, with 5.6 million shares having changed hands at the time of writing. Recently, the oil and gas exploration company postponed the closing date of the business combination transaction with Metamaterial Inc. to June 30, 2021. Notably, the extension of the date gives time for the special Series A Preferred Stock dividend, declared last week, to transpire.
vTv Therapeutics (VTVT) was the biggest gainer in pre-market trading as the stock jumped 24.2% at the time of writing. Recently, the clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company inked a licensing deal with Cantex Pharmaceuticals. Per the terms of the agreement, Cantex wins exclusive worldwide rights to develop and commercialize azeliragon, vTv’s novel antagonist of RAGE (the receptor for advanced glycation endproducts).
vTv CEO Steve Holcombe commented, “RAGE is a highly attractive target for the treatment of a wide spectrum of disorders. We believe Cantex is the right partner to further the development of azeliragon, which vTv had studied in Alzheimer’s disease, in new therapeutic indications. They have deep experience in clinical development and the proven capability of repurposing drug candidates for new indications.”
New Concept Energy Inc. (GBR) was the biggest laggard in pre-market trading, as the stock plunged around 17.5% at the time of writing. The Dallas-based company, which is focused on the real estate rental business, has no fundamental news in support of the trading sentiment.
In M&A news, Uber Technologies (UBER) inked a deal to buy the remaining shares of Cornershop that it does not already own, which is 47%. Upon the deal’s close, Uber will own 100% of the grocery delivery start-up and make it its wholly-owned subsidiary. Notably, the company acquired the majority stake in the third quarter of 2020 (except in Mexico, which closed in January 2021).
The rest of Cornershop will be acquired in an all-stock transaction, with the issue of 29 million shares of Uber’s stock to the minority Cornershop investors for a purchase price of $1.4 billion. The transaction is expected to close this July.
Uber commented in an SEC filing, “Cornershop’s financial results are already fully consolidated in the Company’s financial statements given the Company’s existing majority ownership, therefore no change is expected to the Company’s Gross Bookings, Revenue or Adjusted EBITDA as a result of the transaction.”
Meanwhile, Netflix (NFLX) and Amblin Partners, the company headed by Steven Spielberg, entered into a strategic partnership to produce multiple new films per year for the streaming platform. Amid stiff competition in the streaming business, the deal is likely to enhance Netflix’s streaming library with promising entertainment options.
Netflix’s Head of Global Film Scott Stuber commented, “Amblin and Steven Spielberg are synonymous with incredible entertainment. Their passion and artistry combine to make films that both captivate and challenge audiences.”
Welltower (WELL) announced its intention to purchase Holiday Retirement’s 86-property senior housing folio for $1.58 billion. The transaction is likely to close in the third quarter of this year. Welltower is a real estate investment trust that invests in healthcare infrastructure.
Upon closing of the transaction, Atria Senior Living, with whom Welltower has inked a deal to manage properties, will acquire Holiday Retirement, attain control of the properties and retain Holiday’s senior management and staff.
Welltower CEO Shankh Mitra said, “Welltower is thrilled to expand its strong partnership with Atria through the acquisition of this unique platform of assets. John and the Atria team share our vision for the significant, multi-year growth opportunity in the seniors housing sector and we are excited to embark on this journey together. Through a highly incentivized and aligned management contract, we have created tremendous upside opportunity for stakeholders of both Welltower and Atria.”
IAA Inc. (IAA), a company that provides a marketplace for vehicle purchases and sales, disclosed that it has acquired Auto Exchange’s business to expand its footprint in the New Jersey market. Transaction details remain under wraps. Auto Exchange caters to the vehicle salvage industry in New Jersey. IAA, via its platform, helps facilitate the sale of total-loss, damaged, and low-value vehicles.
IAA CEO and President John Kett commented, “Bringing Auto Exchange under the IAA umbrella will allow us to provide premier service to our selling and buying customers in the New Jersey area.”
In other news, the American multinational beverage corporation Coca-Cola (KO) has revealed its plan to double its spending with minority-owned media firms by 2024. The company said that media companies owned by Black, Hispanic, Asian-American, and Pacific Islander (AAPI), and other partners will account for 8% of the company’s total annual media budget in North America by 2024.
Coca-Cola’s North America operating unit Chief marketing officer Melanie Boulden said, “We must take a leadership role, and that’s why we’re not only committing to increase our investment with minority-owned and led media companies, but also are focused on non-media partnerships and empowerment initiatives designed to foster growth and increase competitive advantage of minority businesses and communities.”