Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. ING Groep NV Vornado Realty Trust, JA Solar Holdings Co and MEMC Electronic Materials

Mar 09, 2011, 09:30 ET from Zacks Investment Research, Inc.

CHICAGO, March 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Zacks.com Analyst Blog features: CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. (NYSE: CBG), ING Groep NV (NYSE: ING), Vornado Realty Trust (NYSE: VNO), JA Solar Holdings Co. Ltd. (Nasdaq: JASO) and MEMC Electronic Materials Inc. (NYSE: WFR).

(Logo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20101027/ZIRLOGO)

Get the most recent insight from Zacks Equity Research with the free Profit from the Pros newsletter: http://at.zacks.com/?id=4579

Here are highlights from Tuesday's Analyst Blog:

CB Richard Ellis to Buy ING Biz

CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. (NYSE: CBG), the world's largest commercial real estate services company (on the basis of 2010 revenues), has recently obtained $800 million of new term loans under its credit facility to fund the acquisition of the majority stake in the real estate division of ING Groep NV (NYSE: ING), a leading financial services company.

The company has also modified the existing credit agreement to enjoy an additional flexibility and capitalize on other potential acquisition opportunities stemming from a recovery in commercial real estate market fundamentals.

CB Richard Ellis had earlier acquired the lion's share of ING Real Estate Investment Management operations in Europe and Asia, and Clarion Real Estate Securities – the U.S.-based global real estate listed securities business of ING, for $940 million in cash, leaving behind rival bidders such as Vornado Realty Trust (NYSE: VNO). The company also expects to incur additional costs of approximately $150 million relating to the transaction.

Over the past year, ING Real Estate Investment Management had been scurrying for potential bidders to raise funds by divesting its non-core business. The company offers a broad range of funds and separate accounts across private equity and listed shares (including hedge funds).

ING Real Estate's investment policy is based on an indigenous in-depth study provided by its global research team through top-down research that develops portfolio strategy and identifies target markets, and bottom-up research that integrates local market analysis into each investment decision. With a global portfolio of $59.8 billion (as of December 31, 2010), the company has been consistently ranked as one of the largest real estate managers of the world.

The real estate management business has recovered significantly in 2010 with a strong growth in assets under management after a testing time during the global downturn in 2008 and 2009. Consequently, with the acquisition, CB Richard Ellis has transformed itself as the largest investment manager and adviser in the world, creating a behemoth of sorts in the financial industry with nearly $100 billion of assets under management.

Post-acquisition, CB Richard Ellis' net debt is expected to be less than 2.25x EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization), which is well within the maximum allowable covenant leverage ratio of 3.75x. ING Real Estate Investment Management would be merged with its existing fund management division, called CBRE Investors, which had over $37.6 billion assets under management as of December 31, 2010.

JA Solar-MEMC in Solar Joint Venture

JA Solar Holdings Co. Ltd. (Nasdaq: JASO) and MEMC Electronic Materials Inc.'s (NYSE: WFR) affiliate, MEMC Singapore, formed a 50-50 joint venture to build and operate a solar cell production facility in China.

The Phase One of the project will involve the building of a production facility with a capacity of 250 megawatts (MW) of photovoltaic (PV) cells located at JA Solar's Yangzhou site. In the following phases, total production capacity may be expanded up to 1GW. Phase one of the project is expected to begin in 2H11.

The solar companies are spending heavily to increase their production capacity and capturing a larger market share. JA Solar is one of the most cost-efficient solar producers in the world, with a geographically diverse customer base as well as silicon wafer supply agreements in place to feed its production.

In the near term, however, apprehensions over the tepid module demand in Europe, rising competition, wafer dependency, the financial stability of its customers and the oversupply of solar cells in the market will restrain the valuation of the company.

JA Solar presently retains a short-term Zacks #3 Rank (Hold) that corresponds with our long-term Neutral recommendation on the stock.

Want more from Zacks Equity Research? Subscribe to the free Profit from the Pros newsletter: http://at.zacks.com/?id=5514.

About Zacks Equity Research

Zacks Equity Research provides the best of quantitative and qualitative analysis to help investors know what stocks to buy and which to sell for the long-term.

Continuous coverage is provided for a universe of 1,150 publicly traded stocks. Our analysts are organized by industry which gives them keen insights to developments that affect company profits and stock performance. Recommendations and target prices are six-month time horizons.

Zacks "Profit from the Pros" e-mail newsletter provides highlights of the latest analysis from Zacks Equity Research. Subscribe to this free newsletter today: http://at.zacks.com/?id=5516

About Zacks

Zacks.com is a property of Zacks Investment Research, Inc., which was formed in 1978 by Leonard Zacks. As a PhD in mathematics Len knew he could find patterns in stock market data that would lead to superior investment results. Amongst his many accomplishments was the formation of his proprietary stock picking system; the Zacks Rank, which continues to outperform the market by nearly a 3 to 1 margin. The best way to unlock the profitable stock recommendations and market insights of Zacks Investment

Research is through our free daily email newsletter; Profit from the Pros. In short, it's your steady flow of Profitable ideas GUARANTEED to be worth your time! Register for your free subscription to Profit from the Pros at http://at.zacks.com/?id=4580.

Visit http://www.zacks.com/performance for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

Follow us on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/ZacksResearch

Join us on Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/ZacksInvestmentResearch

Disclaimer: Past performance does not guarantee future results. Investors should always research companies and securities before making any investments. Nothing herein should be construed as an offer or solicitation to buy or sell any security.

Contact:

Mark Vickery

Web Content Editor

312-265-9380

Visit: www.zacks.com



SOURCE Zacks Investment Research, Inc.



RELATED LINKS

http://www.zacks.com