New neutral and cationic complexes [NiBr2(L1)] (1), [NiBr2(OPHPh2)(L1)] (2), [NiMe2(L1)] (3), [NiBr(PMe3)(L1)](Br) (4), [Ni(CH3CN)(PMe3)(L1)](BF4)2 (5), [PdBr2(L2)] (6), [PdI2(L1)] (7), [PtMeCl(L1)] (8), [PtMe2(L1)] (9), [Pt(CH3CN)2(L1)](BF4)2 (10), [Pt(L1)2](X)2 [X = Cl (11a), Br (11b)], [PtX(L1)2](X) [X = Cl (12a), Br (12b)], where L1: [Ph2PCH2C(Ph)N(2,6-Me2C6H3)2] and L2: [Ph2PCH2C(Ph)N(2,6-iPr2C6H3)2], have been prepared and characterised. The molecular structures of 1, 2, 6, 7 and 9 have been determined. The complexes [PdBr2(L2)] (6), [PdBr2(L1)] and [PdMeCl(L1)] have been found to catalyse the Heck coupling of 4-bromoacetophenone with n-butyl acrylate under aerobic conditions.
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