Saturday, November 22, 2008

Epicor update: Elliott decides to wait for after-Christmas sale

Apparently with EPIC stock hovering around $3, the private equity group hovering over the battered company has decided that its offer of $7.50, down from $9.50, might be a little rich.

Managing Automation reports that with the broader markets in the toilet, Elliott was able to pull out thanks to an "out" in their offer tied to any of the major indices going losing 10%. As anyone who's had the courage to open their 401(k) statements lately knows, that hasn't been a problem.

But speculation is that they'll be back in January, when proxy season heats up, and they can nominate new directors who might be inclined to consider a new offer. Should we start a pool here to predict the new offer? Betting closes January 15. And if Elliott asks, I'd be honored to serve as a director myself :)

Disclosure: I am the CEO of a competitor to Epicor, whose open source ERP solution is doing quite well.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

From bad to worse for Epicor

A couple of updates from Managing Automation on the Elliott Associates private equity takeover bid for Epicor:

First, Elliott lowered its bid by $2/share. That's almost $120MM that EPIC shareholders won't see.

Second, MA's source "revealed that at least two other potential buyers have privately expressed interest in Epicor, and said both are software companies in the same Tier 2 space as Epicor and similar in size to the ERP vendor."

Hmm.... anyone want to speculate? Infor is too big, QAD is too small ... but Consona (M2M, Intuitive, etc.) might be just right. Who's the other one? Epicor has sales of $485MM (ttm).

Friday, October 03, 2008

Epicor on the blocks

Update 10/14: Epicor has rejected the offer of $9.50 per share. The stock opened at $6.61 today. Paging Carl Icahn...


Well, many months later, but a similar story to the Golden Gate-Exact rumor below is unfolding. First noted by the research firm 451 Group (subscription only) a week ago, the hedge fund Elliott Associates bought a 10% stake in Epicor, and was making noises about forcing a sale. 451 took a dim few of the chances of such a sale to the likely strategic suspects (Microsoft, Oracle, SAP), and noted that "private equity-backed ERP rollups – which would have trouble digesting an acquisition the size of Epicor, in any case – have been sidelined recently."

Seems that Elliott has come to a similar conclusion, as they're now making an offer for the whole enchilada. Hope they're serious about being a "long-term player" because as 451 observed, it's hard to see a logical flip buyer anytime in the medium-term future.

But hey, maintenance revenues are up (as a percentage of revenue and earnings - WARNING, WARNING!) - so maybe they can just give the cow a good milking for a number of years, everybody can make some nice fees on the deal, and heck with the customers. Sorry, did that sound cynical?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Let's go Dutch: Golden Gate to buy Exact for Infor?

Dutch treat (NOUN) ... An outing, as for dinner or a movie, in which all persons pay their own expenses. (American Heritage Dictionary)

Somehow this one seems to have escaped the notice of most of the US tech press: Exact Holdings (based in Amsterdam) is talking to private equity firms about a sale, including Infor backer Golden Gate Capital. This article in the Financial Times has the skinny.

For those of you keeping score, that would mean a second tombstone for the venerable Macola ERP apps, and a third for the trio of small-company products acquired most recently from Kewill: MAX, Alliance/MFG, and JobBOSS.