Misys agrees to open its books
The prospect of Misys becoming a private company rose after the banking and healthcare software group said it would open its books to allow several parties to conduct due diligence.
An independent committee, which is being chaired by Sir Dominic Cadbury and was formed to consider takeover approaches, said it had received a range of indicative offers for the whole company and for parts of the group, before a deadline passed this month.
The committee was set up in mid-June after Misys received an approach from a group led by Kevin Lomax, chief executive of Misys, former chairman and one of the founding investors.
Since then, the company has received expressions of interest from other parties.
Private equity groups Permira and General Atlantic are believed to have submitted a joint bid for Misys and are thought to have had talks with Mr Lomax.
A consortium led by Silver Lake Partners, a specialist technology investor, and including Sungard Data Systems, the US financial data group, is also understood to have registered an interest in Misys.
Three former directors of the company have considered returning to their former employer, in the event of a low bid emerging. Ross Graham, Mike O’Leary and John Sussens, who all retired from the Misys board within the past seven years, have proposed assuming management control of the group to implement a plan seeking to deliver greater value for investors.
There is also speculation that Ivan Martin, the former head of Misys’ banking division, is considering bidding.
The independent committee said on Tuesday it was in the best interests of shareholders to now allow certain parties access to its books.
Credit Suisse on Tuesday argued that a management buy-out remained the least likely option for the future of the company as the management would need to get a return for the private equity holders.
“As a break-up is the only real option [for this company] the independent board would be forced to ask why this should not just be done as a plc rather than a private company,” said analyst Matthew Hammond.
Misys is due to report full-year results tomorrow. The shares rose 6¾p to 243½p.