UK software groups face takeover

UK software groups face takeover

Aggressive consolidator Infor could have Iris, Coda and Access Accounting in its sights

Software companies Iris, Coda and Access Accounting could find themselves
under new ownership in 2007 as aggressive consolidator Infor continues to make
acquisitions in the sector.

In a research note analysts at AMR Research said that Infor’s strategy
involved doubling revenues from $2bn (£1.01bn) to $4bn within three years, a
plan that would necessitate further acquisitions to follow up the takeover of
FTSE 250 business Systems Union for $3.8bn in April last year.

Industry sources have suggested that the likes of IRIS, Coda and Access
Accounting could be the next targets. ‘Obviously Infor is not going to grow just
by organic growth, so they must have a massive acquisition strategy in place,’
said one senior executive at a UK business software firm.

Iris’s main backers, Hg Capital, led the £102m MBO of the group in July 2004
and could be eyeing an exit. Iris, however, has emphasised its desire to stay
independent.

Coda could also be on the consolidator’s radar. The AIM-listed firm has a
market capitalisation of £125.4m, easily within Infor’s reach. Access Accounting
has long been touted as a takeover target.

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