Fiserv steps back from expressing interest in Misys

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Fiserv has become the second company to drop its interest in Misys, the banking and healthcare software group.

The US technology group conducted due diligence when the UK group agreed to open its books in July to parties interested in buying the business.

However, Fiserv is understood to have had reservations about integrating Misys’s banking unit into its own operations.

It also had little interest in the UK group’s healthcare software business.

Fiserv joined the consortium led by Silver Lake Partners, a specialist technology investor, and including Sungard Data Systems, the US financial data group, in dropping its interest.

Fiserv was also believed to be part of the “various” parties that Misys referred to in its statement to the market last week.

However, a person familiar with the situation said that Misys was still talking to more than one party.

The independent board of Misys is believed to be holding out for an offer in the region of 260p to 265p a share but approaches have fallen short of their valuation.

An approach led by Kevin Lomax, founding investor and chief executive, in partnership with General Atlantic and Permira, the private equity groups, is believed to be unwilling to offer more than 255p per share.

Misys is hoping to have the issue resolved before the group’s annual meeting on October 4, when Mr Lomax is standing for re-election as a director.

Misys set up an independent committee, chaired by Sir Dominic Cadbury, to consider takeover approaches in June.

However, last week’s announcement that there was no guarantee of a formal offer on terms that the committee was prepared to accept saw the shares drop 10 per cent on fears that a takeover would not materialise.

Two shareholders, who preferred not to be identified and together own about 5 per cent of Misys’s equity, have indicated to the Financial Times that they would be prepared to accept an offer of about 255p per share.

On Friday, shares in Misys closed down 1¼p at 230¾p.

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