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Deals of the day-Mergers and acquisitions

(Updates Unibail-Rodamco; adds United Shipbuilding Corp, Axel Springer and easyJet)

Dec 12 (Reuters) - The following bids, mergers, acquisitions and disposals were reported by 2100 GMT on Tuesday:

** Europe's biggest property firm Unibail-Rodamco is to buy U.S. and UK mall operator Westfield Corp for $16 billion, a defensive move to create a global leader in a sector grappling with the online shopping challenge led by Amazon

** Australia's Tatts Group Ltd cleared one of the last hurdles in its takeover by horse race-betting firm Tabcorp Holdings Ltd with the lottery owner getting the green signal from its shareholders.

** Zurich Insurance has agreed to buy Australia and New Zealand Banking Group's life insurance arm for A$2.85 billion ($2.1 billion), its biggest foray into Australia and its third in the last two years.

** Thai Beverage, through a Vietnam unit, has emerged as the only bidder which has registered to own at least 25 percent of the nation's top brewer, Sabeco, in which the government is selling a $5-billion stake.

** Russia's state-owned United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) is looking to sell a majority stake in its Arctech shipyard in Finland as sanctions against the holding company hamper business, the head of the shipyard said.

** British budget airline easyJet gained unconditional EU antitrust approval to buy parts of Air Berlin , in contrast with rival Lufthansa, which is trying to convince regulators of its own bid for other Air Berlin assets.

** Germany's Axel Springer plans to sell its majority stake in online platform aufeminin S.A. to France's TF1 news channel for 286 million euros ($335.4 million).

** Russian business conglomerate Sistema has ceded control of Detsky Mir by selling a 5 percent stake in the country's largest toy retailer for around $56 million.

** Germany's Audi has abandoned plans to sell its Italian motorcycle brand Ducati, its chief executive Rupert Stadler said, in a sign of confidence that the carmaker expects to be able to carry the costs of its transformation.

** South Africa's Steinhoff is considering selling stakes worth a combined $1.4 billion in local companies PSG Group and KAP Industrial to help plug a liquidity gap at the retailer, two sources familiar with the matter said.

** German cooperative lender DZ Bank is moving ahead with plans to sell its DVB transport finance arm, after being hit by large provisions for bad shipping loans, people familiar with the matter said.

** Investors gave an early thumbs up to a 4.3 billion euro bid by French technology company Atos for smaller rival Gemalto, betting the tie-up will yield benefits and boost revenues.

** Bharti Airtel Ltd said an affiliate of U.S. private equity firm Warburg Pincus will buy up to a 20 percent stake in the Indian telecom operator's direct-to-home arm for $350 million.

** BHP,, the world's largest miner, has asked four investment banks to help it prepare for either a sale or spin-off of its underperforming U.S. shale oil and gas unit, with a view to taking a decision in early 2018, sources said.

** Chinese tech giant Tencent Holdings Ltd plans to buy a 5 percent stake in Yonghui Superstores Co Ltd , the department store operator said on Monday, in the latest push by China's internet giants into offline retail.

** Buyout firm Ardian has agreed to sell its stake in infrastructure assets to existing shareholder pension fund APG, in a deal which values the entire portfolio at more than 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) the private equity firm told Reuters.

** French ski resort operator Compagnie des Alpes said it was confident of making progress in selling a stake to potential investors including China's Fosun in the coming months.

** A Blackstone real estate fund is buying a 10 percent stake in Logicor Ltd (IPO-LOG.L) just months after selling the European warehouse firm to a Chinese sovereign wealth fund, a source familiar with the matter said. (Compiled by Nikhil Subba and Ahmed Farhatha in Bengaluru)