Reckitt Benckiser is trending as the British consumer products group has offered $1.4 billion to purchase Schiff Nutrition International ( SHF), topping the offer previously made by Bayer. Reckitt said it would offer $42 per Schiff share, handily beating Bayer's $1.2 billion, or $34 per share, offer that was made on Oct. 30. Schiff's main shareholders already agreed to the lower-priced buyout bid from Bayer. The two companies are competing for Schiff's fast-growing and steadily profitable vitamins and nutritional supplements business. Now, all eyes will be on Bayer to see if it responds with a counterbid, or if the action could potentially attract more potential suitors. According to its deal with Bayer, Schiff may entertain higher offers made in writing prior to Nov. 28. However, if Schiff goes with Reckitt or any other offer, it would have to pay a $22 million breakup fee to Bayer. Schiff's top-selling brands include MegaRed for heart care, Airborne for preventing colds and Move Free for joints.
TNT Express is another popular search. The Dutch delivery group has agreed to sell its airline operations to ASL Aviation Group in an effort to protect its deal with United Parcel Service ( UPS).