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发布于:2019-11-30 14:24:37  访问:33 次 回复:0 篇
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Sophos Is Snapped Up By US Private Equity Firm Thoma Bravo For £3bn
Oxfordshire-based cybersecurity firm Sophos is set to be snapped up by a US private equity group in a £3billion ($3.82billion) deal.
Shares in the company, which sells security software to small and medium businesses, jumped by 36 per cent to 577p on the news - just a few pence shy of  Thoma Bravo`s offer of $7.40 (583p) per share.
The offer has been accepted by the board and the deal will now go to shareholders for approval. 
If the offer is accepted, the company will return private after a short spell on the stock market
If shareholders vote in favour of the deal, the FTSE 250 company will end its short spell on the London stock market, where it was floated in 2015 by its former private equity owner Apax for £1billion. 
Peter Gyenes, chairman of Sophos, said the takeover `secures the delivery of future value for shareholders today` thanks to Thoma Bravo`s `deep sector expertise`.
`Under Thoma Bravo`s ownership we expect Sophos to accelerate its evolution and leadership in next-generation cybersecurity,` he added.
The takeover comes as Sophos faced slower growth throughout 2018, with its shares tumbling as a result.   
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`More recent results have stabilised the ship somewhat, but growth has been slower and investor confidence needs a lot of rebuilding,` said analyst Nicholas Hyett at Hargreaves Lansdown.
`Against that background we suspect most investors will be reasonably happy with the offer, and with Sophos` former private equity owner Apax already committed to backing the deal we see little chance of it failing to win shareholder support.`
But he noted that, 더킹카지노주소 [Highly recommended Reading] since the deal in is dollars, the value of the deal could be different depending on what happens with Brexit.  
Sophos faced slower growth throughout 2018, with its shares tumbling as a result
Seth Boro, a managing partner at Thoma Bravo, 더킹카지노쿠폰 said current management would remain in place. 
Sophos was launched 34 years ago in a semi-detached house in Kidlington, Oxford, by friends Jan Hruska and Peter Lammer. 
The takeover is the latest in a long line of foreign businesses snapping up UK-listed firms, with many taking advantage of the historically weak pound. 
These include: Advent`s £4billion attempted purchase of defence firm Cobham; Hasbro`s £3.3billion takeover of Entertainment One and Asahi`s £250million deal to buy Fuller, Smith & Turner. 
The deal also continues a pattern of UK tech companies being swooped on by foreign buyers. Other recent examples include Nightstar Therapeutics, Telecity and  Cambridge Silicon Radio.
`Another day, another takeover of a UK company by a foreign business as a US private equity firm makes a bid for FTSE 250 software firm Sophos,` noted Russ Mould of AJ Bell. 
`Sterling weakness has made pound-denominated assets look cheap and so we`ve seen many overseas firms pounce on UK assets in the past few years.`
Mould said Thoma Bravo`s bid was `fairly generous` with a 37.1 per cent premium to last Friday`s market closing price. 
`The 583p take-out price is considerably ahead of the 225p price at which Sophos joined the market in 2015, meaning investors who bought at the IPO offer would have made 159 per cent share price return in four years. That`s a stellar performance when you consider the historical returns from shares as an asset class have been approximately 7 per cent a year,` Mould continued.
`The downside of Sophos receiving a takeover bid is that the London market loses yet another tech stock.`
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