Friday, December 08, 2006

Indian Stock Market News : Oracle raises bid for i-flex to $1.3 billion

Indian Stock Market News : Oracle raises bid for i-flex to $1.3 billion

Oracle Corporation, the world's biggest maker of database software, increased its offer for banking software provider i-flex Solutions Ltd. to $1.3 billion, in its bid to take its stake in i-flex to 90 per cent.

Oracle said it is willing to pay Rs2,100 per i-flex share, up 42 from the Rs1,475 it paid previously.

The revised offer, which Oracle said was final, represented a 20 per cent premium to i-flex's closing price on Thursday.

The offer values i-flex at 49 times forecast earnings, versus a sector average of 24 for Indian application software makers. I-flex shares rose a record 17 per cent on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).

I-flex shares were trading 16.6 per cent higher at Rs2,036 on the BSE in the evening trade, down 0.6 per cent from the day's high. The shares had earlier hit a recorded 17.4 per cent gain at Rs2,055 on the BSE.

Oracle already owns 55 per cent of i-flex and in September offered to pay up to $531 million to increase its stake to 75 per cent. The new offer means Oracle is bidding for around 28.4 million i-flex shares worth Rs5,950 crore, or $1.3 billion.

"There will not be another open offer and Oracle will not undertake a delisting for at least the next five years unless i-flex shares are selling at a significantly lower price than they are today," Oracle chief executive Larry Ellison said in a statement.

"This is the last opportunity for i-flex shareholders to tender their shares to Oracle." Oracle, however, declined to say why the company had revised its proposal.


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Source : http://www.domain-b.com

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