Hit hard by the collapse of its largest customer, MF Global, troubled UK screen-dealing software house Patsystems has been approached about a takeover by ION Trading.
ION, which is already the vendor's largest shareholder, has floated the possibility of a cash offer valuing each Patsystems share at 14 pence.
Shares in Patsystems closed on Friday at 9.63 pence but have soared 32% in morning trading on the latest news to 12.75 pence.
The Patsystems board says it "acknowledges the Company's strong commercial fit with ION, their greater financial stability, as well as the potential benefits to staff, customers and product development. The Board will therefore carefully assess the merits of the proposed combination."
ION - which earlier this year acquired Wall Street Systems - now has until 26 December to either announce a firm intention to make an offer or not.
Meanwhile, the vendor has completed a preliminary assessment of the implications of MF Global's collapse. Patsystems says it is owed about £900,000 by the US brokerage and, although it is talking to trustees and administrators, it "cannot be certain of the extent to which these monies will be fully recovered".
In addition, although it hopes that some of MF Global's customer base will migrate to other Patsystems clients, the firms still expects profits for the year to be hit by around £500,000.