Computer Sciences Corp has acquired a 51% stake in CSA Holdings Ltd, one of the largest IT services companies in Asia. CSC already owned about 32% of CSA’s 128 million outstanding shares. Singapore-based CSA boasts roughly $270m in annual revenue and has 2,000 employees and is part of an aggressive expansion strategy CSC is planning through Asia.
America Online Inc acquired MovieFone Inc, the purveyor of telephone and web-based movie information and ticketing services for about $388m in AOL stock. In addition to its web-based transaction service, MovieFone provides familiar phone numbers in numerous local US markets where movie-goers can dial 777-FILM to order tickets.
UK-based accounting software company, The Sage Group Plc, strengthened its position in the US market with the $145m acquisition of Peachtree Software Inc. Sage’s main break into the US came in January 1998 with the $263m purchase of Irvine California-based State Of The Art Inc. The all-cash deal with Peachtree’s owners, New Jersey-based computer services company, Automatic Data Processing Inc, is designed to give Sage a base in the small business market where Peachtree’s package has one million users.
Star Telecommunications Inc, the Santa Barbara, California-based international long distance carrier, acquired PT-1 Communications Inc, a fellow carrier and the largest provider of prepaid calling cards in the US. The merger creates the seventh-largest long- distance carrier in the US in terms of revenue, doubling the size of Star’s business to approximately $1bn a year. The deal was completed through the issuance of 15.3 million shares of Star common stock – representing approximately 27% of the combined outstanding stock – and $19.5m in cash to the PT-1 stockholders, valuing the acquisition is $233.7m.
Mannesmann AG and Olivetti SpA have increased their stake in the Italian telecoms market as a result of their successful bid for US telco Cellular Communications International, which owned a 10.3% share of Italian telco Omnitel. The acquisition could give the Olivetti/Mannesmann partnership a 50.3% joint stake in Omnitel, but Bell Atlantic Corp has been given options to buy a third of the Cellular Communications stake. If Bell Atlantic takes the option, its Omnitel stake would rise to 23.1%, leaving Olivetti/Mannesmann with 46.8%. The German/Italian partnership’s successful offer of $80 per share, made through their wholly- owned subsidiary Kensington Acquisition came after a previous offer of $65.75 per share was rejected by shareholders. The successful offer values the company at $20bn.
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