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February 3, 2014

Compuware completes sell off of three units to investment fund

Mobile and cloud unit Uniface celebrates new ‘flexibility’ under private ownership.

By Joe Curtis

Compuware has completed its sale of its mobile and cloud development arm with two other units for a reported $160m in a bid to cut costs.

Uniface is one of three business units sold to a private equity fund by the Detroit tech firm as it looks to shave its expenses bill by $100m by 2015.

Uniface, business performance arm Changepoint, and an IT services solutions unit together represent 25% of Compuware’s revenue, but today Marlin Equity Partners completed its purchase of all three.

The investment fund hopes to provide all three with "operational expertise" as well as financial resources.

Uniface has now relocated its headquarters to Amsterdam, with a roster of 120 employees, though it is not clear what number of staff may have been laid off in the takeover.

Uniface will continue to focus on offering enterprise app development within its platform, said its president, Aad van Schetsen.

"Under our new private ownership structure, Uniface will be even more flexible and entrepreneurial, allowing it to do more of what it does best — serve our customers with a single-minded purpose and drive the innovations that will help them achieve their goals fast, particularly in the areas of mobile and cloud," he said.

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Creative Intellect analyst Bola Rotibi said the sell-off could prove financially beneficial for Uniface, with Marlin boasting $2.6bn in capital management.

"There is now opportunity for the level of investment that will further expand the Uniface roadmap and value proposition," he said. "The mix of competing technology architectures, delivery models and business and end user demands, highlight a future for which the Uniface platform is well positioned."

Compuware bought Changepoint in 2004 for $100m and Uniface in 1994 for $280m.

Shedding all three businesses is expected to cut Compuware’s staff numbers from 4,500 to 3,200.

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