SoftwareOne is still in discussions with Bain Capital and expects to conclude its strategic review this month.
That’s according to an alert the SIX Swiss-listed software and cloud solutions provider issued this morning in response to “media reports”.
According to a Bloomberg report on Friday, Bain’s pursuit of SoftwareOne has “stalled” after a fresh offer of almost 3bn Swiss francs ($3.5bn) it submitted met a tepid response from its board.
SoftwareOne, however, stated this morning that “as part of its ongoing strategic review, it continues to be in discussions with Bain Capital following an extensive due diligence process, discussions which may or may not lead to an offer”.
“The Board expects to conclude discussions and provide an update on the outcome of the strategic review to shareholders by the end of the month,” it added.
Bain first submitted a bid for the Microsoft, AWS and Adobe partner in June for 18.5 Swiss francs per share, before upping its offer to 19.5-20.5 Swiss francs per share in July. The approaches valued SoftwareOne at 2.93bn Swiss francs and 3.2bn Swiss francs, respectively.
SoftwareOne snubbed them both and instead kicked off a strategic review.
In October, Canalys analyst Sheena Wee held up the rebuff as a prime example of the mismatch between buyer and seller expectations that currently exists, characterising it as a “disjointed valuation market”.
Only last week, Trustmarque CEO Simon Williams told IT Channel Oxygen that cheap money had led to “unrealistic” valuations among some acquisition targets it looked at last year. The slowdown in M&A triggered by higher interest rates could make it more of a buyer’s market, he added however.
The Stans-based software licensing and SAM specialist labelled its UK arm a “standout performer” in its latest quarter, even as it cut its overall annual growth guidance amid “increasingly volatile conditions”. Although Europe – which represents 61% of the business – remained “resilient” in Q3, with revenues up 9.6%, SoftwareOne is not expecting a “normal budget flush” in the region in Q4 “in light of the overall environment”, CEO Brian Duffy (pictured top) said.
The 9,000-employee giant’s share price opened at 16.50 Swiss francs this morning, valuing it at around 2.6bn Swiss francs.
Bain’s latest offer of around 3bn Swiss francs is below its previous 19.50 to 20.50 francs per share bid, the Reuters report claimed.