Nov 21, 2017

Paints mega-merger called off

Dutch paints maker AkzoNobel and U.S. rival Axalta Coating Systems said on Tuesday that they have ended merger talks. The combined paints and coating company could have been worth $30 billion.

Backstory: The deal talks followed Pittsburgh-based PPG Industries trying to buy AkzoNobel earlier this year, but getting rebuffed. The theory was that if AkzoNobel could buy Axalta, then it would be too big for PPG to swallow.

Axalta CEO's statement: "After pursuing a potential combination of Axalta and Akzo, we concluded we could not negotiate a transaction on terms that meet our criteria. Any transaction we ultimately agree to needs to generate superior long-term value for Axalta shareholders as compared to the continued execution of our strategic plan."

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Sanders takes aim at Bloomberg: "Trump will chew him up and spit him out"

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Bernie Sanders told CBS "60 Minutes" that he was surprised by Mike Bloomberg's lackluster performance at Wednesday's Democratic debate.

What he's saying: "If that's what happened in a Democratic debate, you know, I think it's quite likely that Trump will chew him up and spit him out."

Scoop: Lyft acquires cartop advertising startup Halo Cars

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Lyft has acquired Halo Cars, a small startup that lets ride-hailing drivers earn money via ad displays mounted atop their cars. Lyft confirmed the deal but declined to share any details.

Why it matters: Ride-hailing companies are increasingly eyeing additional ways to generate revenue, and Lyft rival Uber has been quietly testing a partnership with New York-based Cargo that gives it a cut of the advertising revenue, as I previously reported.

Scoop: New White House personnel chief tells Cabinet liaisons to target Never Trumpers

McEntee, shown with White House counselor Kellyanne Conway and White House senior adviser Stephen Miller, walks on the South Lawn of the White House Jan. 9. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Johnny McEntee called in White House liaisons from cabinet agencies for an introductory meeting Thursday, in which he asked them to identify political appointees across the U.S. government who are believed to be anti-Trump, three sources familiar with the meeting tell Axios.

Behind the scenes: McEntee, a 29-year-old former body man to Trump who was fired in 2018 by then-Chief of Staff John Kelly but recently rehired — and promoted to head the presidential personnel office — foreshadowed sweeping personnel changes across government.