Nothing was being said on the record last night, but industry sources say that open systems software house Sphinx Ltd is up for sale. Suggested bidders for the six-year-old venture capital funded company include the Headland Group Plc, Pegasus Software Plc, and Kernel Technology Ltd, Leeds. Sphinx chairman Dr Pamela Grey said that over the last year the company had been strengthening its management resources and begun identifying its own acquisition targets, but in doing so could have stirred up fish bigger than ourselves. Olivetti’s venture capital arm, Abingworth Plc and Alan Patricof Associates are among those with a stake in Sphinx, and founders Dr Grey and Dominic Dunlop also retain an interest. The name highest on most peole’s list of bidders was Headland, previously Compsoft Holdings, of Guildford, Surrey (CI No 1,034): chairman Geoff Bristow confirmed that the company was looking for acquisitions, having increased its revenues by a factor of 10 over the last year, and that the Unix market was of particular interest.