Oracle still set on PeopleSoft bid

By : |December 20, 2003 0

SAN FRANCISCO: Oracle Corp. said that it remained committed to acquiring rival software maker PeopleSoft Inc. in a $7.3-billion hostile deal despite the withdrawal of half the shares tendered as of October.

Oracle, the world’s second-biggest software maker, extended its tender offer for PeopleSoft, to Feb. 13 from Dec. 31 and said 12.4 million shares — about 3 percent of total PeopleSoft shares outstanding — had been tendered and not withdrawn by the December deadline.

When Oracle last extended its offer, in October, 24.8 million shares had been tendered. The number of shares tendered has fallen steadily since Oracle announced its plan to takeover PeopleSoft in June.

Antitrust regulators in the United States and Europe are reviewing Oracle’s bid, and are not expected to issue a decision until early next year. The deal is essentially on hold until regulators issue that decision.

PeopleSoft’s board, which has unanimously rejected Oracle’s advance, has said the deal is likely to be blocked on antitrust grounds and that the offer undervalues the company.

“The continued underwhelming response to Oracle’s unsolicited tender offer is consistent with the PeopleSoft board of directors’ conclusion that Oracle’s offer is not in the best interests of PeopleSoft stockholders,” PeopleSoft spokesman Steve Swasey, told Reuters.

Oracle Chief Executive, Larry Ellison told Reuters in October that his company would hang in for as long as it takes to get control of PeopleSoft.

Oracle spokeswoman, Jennifer Glass on Friday declined to comment on the number of tendered shares, but said Oracle had turned over all of the information requested by U.S. regulators.

Oracle is offering $19.50 per share for PeopleSoft. The stock closed at $22.13 on the Nasdaq on Friday.


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