KBC in takeover tussle

$255 million ‘irrevocable’ deal sees Yokogawa pip AspenTech to the post in short sharp bidding war for process/modeling software boutique.

Folks at hydrocarbon process software boutique KBC Advanced Technologies have had an exciting start to 2016. First, as we reported in our last issue, Aspen Technology comes forward with a $230 million cash bid for KBC via its wholly-owned ATI Global Optimisation unit. The bid was unanimously approved by both companies’ boards of directors.

That was before Yokogawa, in move #2 in its Transformation 2017 business plan for ‘quick, strategic investments’ (see last month’s lead) upped the ante with a $255 million bid, 69% premium on KBC’s share price. AspenTech has stated that it is not planning to raise its offer. Yokogawa believes that the combination of its engineering reach and KBC’s software will provide customers with a ‘one stop’ solution to process optimization.

KBC’s private equity owners who had made ‘irrevocable’ undertakings in respect of the AspenTech offer promptly revoked these and made further ‘irrevocable’ undertakings to sell to Yokogawa. So far, no new bids have come along that would lead to more revoking of the irrevocable but you never know...

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