The Business Herald’s markets and banking reporter.

Diligent takeover confirmed

Diligent chief executive Brian Stafford.
Diligent chief executive Brian Stafford.

NZX-listed software developer Diligent Corporation has confirmed it has entered an agreement to be purchased by a US investment firm for a 31 per cent premium to its pre-announcement stock price.

New York-based Insight Venture Partners' offer of US$4.90 (NZ$7.39) a share values Diligent at around $941 million.

At the company's closing price of $5.64 on Friday, the firm was valued at $493.5 million.

Diligent's software is used by company directors for board meetings.

The firm listed on the NZX at $1 a share in December 2007.

The Insight deal is subject to the approval of a majority of the outstanding shares of Diligent common stock and preference shares, voting as one class; the approval of least 60 per cent of the outstanding Diligent preference shares, voting separately; regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions, including that the existing directors will resign on closing, the company said.

The holders of Diligent's preference shares, including Spring Street Partners, Diligent's largest shareholder, have entered voting agreements in support of the deal.

A special shareholders' meeting will be scheduled "as soon as practicable".

The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of this year, at which point Diligent would be de-listed from the NZX.

Diligent chief executive Brian Stafford said it was an "exciting day" for the company.

"I'm thrilled to partner with Insight, which brings substantial experience supporting the growth of software companies around the world," he said. "Our game plan will not change as a private company - to be the leading provider of collaboration software for boards, committees, and leadership teams."

Stafford said Diligent's current senior management team would continue to run the business after the deal closed.

New York-based Insight is best known for making investments in start-ups and growth-stage firms, but has also participated in corporate takeovers before, according to Reuters.

Insight managing director Deven Parekh said his firm was looking forward to working with Diligent to "accelerate the company's progress in the large and growing communications and collaboration market".

"Diligent leads the way in collaboration between boards and senior executives withmore than 3,500 clients,tremendous innovation and unparalleled service," Parekh said.

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter


© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production bpcf04 at 28 Oct 2016 10:24:48 Processing Time: 505ms