Infosys Technologies said on Monday it had agreed to buy British consultancy Axon Group Plc for £407m (US$753m) as India’s second-biggest software services exporter looks for growth beyond an uncertain U.S. market.
The cash deal values Axon at £6 per share, a 19.4 per cent premium over Friday’s close of £5.025 and 33 per cent over the average price of the last six months, Infosys CEO Kris Gopalakrishnan said.
The offer price included any interim dividend that Axon, which has a market value of almost US$600m, may announce when it releases results on Tuesday, Infosys said. The Axon board has already ”unanimously recommended” the offer, with its large shareholders and some key employees also supporting the deal, Infosys CFO V. Balakrishnan said.
”They wanted to enter Europe in a big way, and probably this is the reason why they have paid a higher premium,” said R. K. Gupta, managing director of Taurus Mutual Fund in New Delhi.
”It’s a positive sign for the company because they were sitting on a huge cash pile, and it was not generating any return.”
Subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals, Nasdaq-listed Infosys expects to complete the deal in November. Axon, which provides services to companies using products of German business software maker SAP, would be delisted, Infosys said.
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Above picture of Infosys Mysore courtesy: Karthik