Anglo-Dutch IT services giant Logica has agreed to be acquired by Canada's CGI Group in a £1.7 billion cash deal.
Under the deal, agreed between the two boards, Logica shareholders will receive 105 pence a share, a 60% premium on yesterday's closing price. In addition to the board, holders of 18.19% of the firm's shares have agreed to back the offer.
Logica has a strong presence in the financial services market, employing around 6000 people in 36 countries in the sector and claiming to have worked with 70% of the world's banks. CGI also has a significant interest in the FS industry, with customers including 23 of the top 25 banks in the Americas.
Explaining the rationale for the tie-up, Logica chairman David Tyley says competition has increased as the industry globalises, making scale increasingly important and the two companies have little geographical overlap.
"Additionally, in Logica's main European markets there is considerable economic uncertainty, which affects confidence and demand from both public and private clients," says Tyley.
CGI says it expects the deal to be completed by September but with Logica trading through the bid price at 107.9 pence per share in morning trading, analysts suggest that a counter offer could yet appear.
Julian Yates from Investec says this "can never be ruled out due to the bid price multiple which at FY12 EV/EBITDA 6.5x and 10x PE does not carry a significant PE premium to peers".
George O'Connor, Panmure Gordon, says: "Logica is one of cheapest IT service companies, and even at acquisition multiples it is attractive enough to flush out another buyer. The potential buyers are numerous (start at IBM, or Accenture and just walk down the list) - and, as we have long argued, Logica is simply badly configured for the modern market and is fixable given strong resolute management."