The pursuit of IT services provider SMS Management & Technology is now a one horse race with the original suitor DWS Limited opting out of the contest.
DWS’s decision to drop out paves the way for Perth-based ASG Group to pick up SMS, with the target’s management backing ASG’s $1.80 a share cash offer, valuing it at $124 million.
ASG made a late entry to outgun DWS, which had offered SMS shareholders $1 in cash and 0.39 shares under an offer lodged in February. DWS was on track to buy SMS before ASG swooped in just as the target’s shareholders were getting ready to vote on DWS offer.
The late development put pressure on DWS, which faced the prospect of going toe-to-toe with ASG, which is backed up by the firepower of its Japanese owner Nomura Research Institute.
DWS told the market on Monday that it would not be will not be lobbing a counter proposal to ASG’s bid.
“The Board of DWS believes DWS is well positioned in its target markets and will continue to assess value accretive growth opportunities that align with its broader strategy,” the company said.
SMS’s management has confirmed that it now intends to accept the ASG offer.
ASG boss Geoff Lewis said that adding SMS to the fold will allow the company to put a more competitive offering to the market.
“We very much look forward to working with SMS to bring our teams together, getting to know the SMS people, and to offering our joint services to SMS’s outstanding customer base,” he said.
“We’ve got something really exciting here and we can’t wait to take this powerful combined service offering to the wider Australian market.”
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