Blue Prism agrees to new £1.2bn takeover bid from SS&C Technologies
Technology firm Blue Prism agrees to new £1.2bn takeover bid from SS&C Technologies
- Blue Prism investors will get 1,275 pence per share under the new proposal
- SS&C is the largest private equity and hedge fund manager in the world
- Blue Prism develops – and helped pioneer – robotic process automation
Software developer Blue Prism has accepted a £1.2 billion takeover approach by US fintech giant SS&C Technologies.
Under the new proposal, Blue Prism shareholders will receive 1,275 pence per share, an increase of 25 pence from private equity firm Vista’s most recent offer and a premium of more than 50 percent to the company’s closing price on Aug. 27. .
More than three quarters of Blue Prism investors now have to approve the latest offer, which is backed by the company’s board and SS&C’s second proposal for the company is after a £12 per share bid last month.
Tech powerhouse: Blue Prism develops – and helped pioneer – robotic process automation (RPA) software, a technology that allows companies to automate administrative tasks
SS&C, the world’s largest private equity and hedge fund manager, plans to incorporate the company with its intelligent automation platform, Chorus, and sell it to its extensive client base.
The group, headquartered in the US state of Connecticut, had been given until Thursday by the City’s Takeover Panel to make a formal offer or withdraw completely.
Should the new offer be accepted by shareholders, Blue Prism co-founders Alastair Bathgate and David Moss, and chief executive and co-chairman Jason Kingdon will receive more than £150 million in compensation for the sale of their shares.
Series entrepreneur Kingdon: ‘The combination ensures that we remain at the forefront of the next generation of intelligent automation and continue to deliver innovative products and services.’
He added: “The process that the Blue Prism Board has gone through over the past five months has been extensive and we believe this offering represents strong, immediate value for our shareholders and benefits for our wider stakeholders.”
Blue Prism develops – and pioneered – robotic process automation (RPA) software, a technology that allows companies to automate administrative tasks, and its customers include large corporations such as IBM, Microsoft and Google.
Blue Prism’s chief executive and chairman Jason Kingdon said: ‘The combination will ensure that we remain at the forefront of the next generation of intelligent automation and continue to deliver innovative products and services’
In late August, it initially revealed after press speculation that it was in talks with Vista and investment firm TPG Capital about a proposed acquisition.
Vista then put forward a £1.1bn offer, but this received a huge backlash from some major shareholders, including Coast Capital and Hawk Ridge Capital Management, who complained that the offer was too low.
Charlotte Nichols, the Labor MP for Warrington, where Blue Prism is based, also strongly criticized the deal, as it would potentially lead to many job losses in the city, while hefty rewards for senior executives.
“Happy money for short-term private equity sharks brings bad luck to long-term committed workers and the job market in our city,” she added.
Vista then increased its offer to £1.22 billion, but Coast Capital again objected, and co-founder James Rastech accused the group’s management of presenting a “false and inconsistent story” to investors.
William Stone, founder and chief executive of SS&C, whose net worth is estimated at $2.8 billion, said his company has “a long history of acquiring high-quality companies and improving their revenue growth profile and cost structure.”
“With SS&C’s management focus, global sales force, talented development organization and significant capital resources, Blue Prism can reach new heights with their intelligent digital workforce.
“We believe that the combination of Blue Prism’s market-leading RPA solutions and SS&C’s leading position in financial services and healthcare will deliver significantly better results.”
Shares in Blue Prism rose 2.4 percent to £13.30 in the late morning of today.