OpenText looks to buy Micro Focus

The information management software vendor plans to acquire the software and cyber security specialist for $6 billion.
Paul Booth
By Paul Booth
Johannesburg, 29 Aug 2022

Activities involving Thoma Bravo and some of its companies, and the proposed $6 billion takeover of Micro Focus by OpenText dominated the international ICT market last month.

Local headlines involved the ongoing MTN/Telkom discussions. 

Key local news

  • Adapt IT Holdings acquired Mauritius-based Agileum Hospitality.
  • Datatec’s Logicalis bought Q Associates, one of the UK's leading providers of IT consultancy and advisory services around data management, data protection, compliance and information security.
  • The R166 million investment led by Knife Capital in DataProphet, an artificial intelligence start-up.
  • Braintree acquired the Xbox business of Vox.
  • Cognition will sell its 50.01% stake in Private Property to BetterHome Group, ooba and Fledge Capital (R150 million).
  • The Google-owned cable system, which connects SA with Portugal and onward onto other submarine and terrestrial internet systems, the Equiano subsea internet cable, has landed at Melkbosstrand, north of Cape Town.
  • SGT’s proposed acquisition of Italian Summer has been cancelled.
  • The merger of regulatory entities the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) and the Film and Publication Board (FPB) will not be moving ahead.
  • Mesh.Trade, a Netherlands-based fintech firm, has established a presence in SA.
  • MiX Telematics’ North American subsidiary has entered into an agreement to acquire Trimble’s Field Service management business in North America.
  • The MTN Group has a $35 million binding offer for its Afghanistan business, nearing an exit for the company from the Middle East.

The merger of regulatory entities ICASA and the Film and Publication Board will not be moving ahead.

  • Prosus has agreed to purchase the remaining shares (33.3%) of Brazil-based iFood from Just Eat (€1.8 billion).
  • The Reach Group, a specialist provider of communications infrastructure management solutions to landlords, property managers and telecoms providers, has acquired Jasco Property Solutions.
  • Tech Mahindra will buy the stakes of Falcorp Technologies, its joint venture partner in SA (R62 million).
  • The Telkom Group has approved the legal and structural separation of Openserve, SA’s largest wholesale network infrastructure provider, effective from 1 September.
  • TTEC Holdings has opened a new global delivery centre in SA.
  • The appointments of CEOs/MDs at ICASA (interim) and PayFast.

Key African news

  • Google invested in Lori Systems, an East African e-logistics company.
  • DVT has opened an office in Kenya.
  • Exclusive Networks Africa has opened a formal office in Lagos, Nigeria.
  • Veon has sold its 45.57% stake in Omnium Telecom Algeria, the company that owns Djezzy, Algeria’s second-largest mobile provider, to Algerian National Investment Fund ($682 million).
  • The appointments of new CEOs/MDs at DVT Kenya, MTN Cameroon, MTN Rwanda and Uber.

Key international news

  • 3Cloud acquired BlueGranite, a data and analytics consulting firm.
  • Accenture acquired Tenbu, a cloud data firm that specialises in solutions for intelligent decision-making and planning through areas such as analytics, big data and machine learning; and YSC Consulting, a CEO advisory and leadership consultancy that helps organisations align leadership strategies with their business goals to achieve transformational change. Accenture has also agreed to buy Indonesia-based Romp, a brand and experience agency; and Sentia’s businesses in the Netherlands, Belgium and Bulgaria. The Sentia group is a cloud consulting company that manages private and public cloud migrations and provides digital-experience monitoring services.
  • Airiam, a managed IT and digital transformation company with a strong focus on cyber security, purchased Vantage Point Solutions Group, a provider of managed IT services.
  • Airtel acquired Gaana, a music streaming platform.
  • Arista Networks bought Puribus Networks, a unified cloud networking vendor.
  • Blackbaud purchased Kilter, an intuitive, gamified, activity-based engagement app boasting virtually limitless activity type choices.
  • Brightchamps, an edtech start-up, acquired Singapore-based Schola, a live-learning platform for kids to develop communication and English skills.
  • Convergence Networks bought Swat Systems, which offers cyber security and IT services to SMEs.
  • CRM&BONUS, a Softbank-backed Brazilian giftback company, purchased Zipper, a platform that creates systems for social media sales.
  • Datadog acquired Seekret, an innovative API observability company.
  • eBay bought myFitment, which offers a technology and platform that provides powerful, easy-to-use and affordable solutions that help sellers drive sales and avoid costly returns.
  • Gryphon Investors purchased Rootstock Software, a provider of cloud-based enterprise resource planning software to manufacturing, distribution and supply chain organisations.
  • Humi, Canada’s leading all-in-one HR platform, acquired Ameego, Canada’s leading scheduling and time clock software.
  • UK-based IQGeo Group bought COMSOF, a Belgian company that builds and licenses fibre-optic network planning and design software.
  • Kofax purchased Ephesoft, a provider of a comprehensive set of value-add intelligent document processing capabilities.
  • Lumentum Holdings acquired IPG Photonics' telecoms transmission product lines.
  • MariaDB, a database and database as a service provider, bought CubeWerx, a developer of advanced geospatial technology.
  • Thoma Bravo-backed Medallia purchased Mindful, which provides call-back automation technology for large contact centres.
  • Netskope acquired Infiot, a start-up, along with its borderless WAN solution for securing a range of remote work sites.
  • Nexus IT Consultants bought fellow MSP, Intelitechs.
  • ParkHub, a provider of parking software and payments solutions, purchased Fuzse, a payments integrator.
  • Pax8 acquired Umbrellar, a New Zealand-based cloud services firm.
  • Paystand, the blockchain-enabled accounts receivable and B2B payments company, bought Yaydoo, the accounts payable, cashflow management and liquidity solutions company in Mexico and LATAM.
  • QinetiQ purchased Avantus Federal, a cyber security group (£483 million).
  • India's Razorpay acquired Ezetap, an offline payments firm.
  • SS&C Technologies bought the sell-side Tier1 CRM business and related assets from Tier1 Financial Solutions. Tier1 CRM is a provider of sell-side CRM solutions targeting capital markets and investment banks.
  • Transaction Network Services purchased Agnity Global, a provider of intelligent business communication applications and infrastructure to organisations in the telecommunications and healthcare industry verticals.
  • UiPath acquired Re:infer, a UK-based natural language processing company for unstructured documents and communications.
  • WeVideo bought PlayPosit, whose software allows educators to add interactive elements such as embedded media, surveys and assessments to their video content.
  • 11:11 Systems, a managed infrastructure solutions provider backed by Tiger Infrastructure Partners, has agreed to acquire the cloud managed services business of Sungard Availability Services.
  • Thoma Bravo-owned ABC Fitness Solutions has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Glofox, one of the fastest-growing fitness management platforms servicing the boutique gym and studio sector.
  • Amazon will acquire iRobot, the robot vacuum cleaner maker ($1.7 billion).
  • Avalara, the automation software platform, has agreed to be acquired by Vista Equity Partners ($8.4 billion).
  • Axios has agreed to a $525 million deal to sell itself to Cox Enterprises, a US telecoms group.
  • Blue Hat Interactive Entertainment Technology’s subsidiary, Xiamen Duwei Consulting Management, has agreed to buy Shengruihao Technology, a company specialised in product supply chain services and integrated enterprise services.
  • Consolidated Communications’ Clio, a subsidiary, has entered into an agreement to sell its limited partnership interests in five wireless partnerships to Cellco Partnership, doing business as Verizon Wireless ($490 million).
  • CSI has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Centerbridge Partners and Bridgeport Partners ($1.6 billion).
  • CyberOptics has agreed to be acquired by Nordson Corporation, a manufacturer of precision technologies ($380 million).
  • DigitalOcean Holdings has entered into an agreement to purchase Cloudways, a managed cloud hosting and software as a service provider for SMEs.
  • eBay plans to acquire TCGplayer, an online marketplace for collectible trading card games ($295 million).
  • Francisco Partners will buy SAP Litmos from SAP. Litmos is an established leader in the learning management systems market.
  • Global Payments will buy smaller peer EVO Payments ($4 billion).
  • GoEngineer, a Court Square Capital Partners-backed 3D design provider, has purchased Computer Aided Technology, a product developer of 3D software and 3D printing hardware.
  • Leidos has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Cobham Aviation Services, Australia's Special Mission business.
  • Miescor Infrastructure Development Corporation has agreed to acquire 2 180 telecoms towers and related passive infrastructure from Globe Telecom (Philippines) ($472.2 million).
  • OpenText plans to buy Micro Focus, a fellow software and cyber security specialist ($6 billion).
  • Rogers Communications and Shaw Communications have entered into a definitive agreement for the sale of Freedom Mobile to Videotron, a subsidiary of Quebecor.
  • Semtech will buy Canada's Sierra Wireless ($1.2 billion).
  • Stratasys has signed a definitive agreement to purchase the additive manufacturing materials business of Covestro.
  • The Sage Group has agreed to acquire Lockstep, the leader in connecting the world’s accounting teams.
  • Thoma Bravo will buy Ping Identity, an authentication and security services business ($2.4 billion); and Nearmap, an Australian mapping company ($730 million).
  • The UK government has blocked Hong Kong firm Super Orange from buying Bristol-based electronic design company Pulsic, citing national security risks. Super Orange HK Holding is controlled by Shanghai UniVista Industrial Software Group.
  • Unity Software, the developer best known for software used to design video games, has signed a co-operation agreement to set up a joint venture in China valued at $1 billion in China. The partners include Alibaba Group Holding, China Mobile, Oppo and Bytedance's Douyin Group.
  • Vodafone will sell its Hungarian business to Hungarian 4iG and state-run Corvinus ($1.8 billion).
  • W3BCLOUD, a tech joint venture between Advanced Micro Devices, ConsenSys and its founders, has agreed to go public in the US by merging with a blank-check firm.
  • Yandex’s Russian operating subsidiary has entered into a binding agreement with VK, one of Russia's largest social media businesses, to sell Yandex's news aggregation platform and Zen infotainment service as well as the main page, where both services have been located. As sole consideration for these assets, Yandex will acquire 100% of the food delivery service Delivery Club.
  • Zuora plans to acquire Zephr, a leading subscription experience platform used by global digital publishing and media companies.
  • The $210 million investment by several investors in upGrad, India's largest online higher education company.
  • The investment by Crestview Partners in Digicomm International, which provides equipment and services to the broadband industry.
  • The $1.5 billion investment by Silver Lake in Global Payments as part of the company's agreement to acquire Evo Payments.
  • The investment by Sverica Capital Management in Omeda, a provider of a SaaS marketing platform that offers customer data management, marketing and e-mail automation.
  • The $99 million investment co-led by Addition and Intel Capital in Anyscale that offers a platform for scaling AI applications.
  • The $105 million investment led by CDPQ in CleverTap, the developer of a B2B platform for customer engagement and retention.
  • The $262 million investment led by D2 Investments in Israeli-based DriveNets, whose cloud-native software enables telecoms providers to build virtual networks that run on cheaper and shared infrastructure.
  • The $100 million investment led by Evolution Equity Partners in Talon Cyber Security, a cyber security company.
  • The $90 million investment led by Goldman Sachs and Thoma Bravo in Aisera, which offers an AI-driven platform that automates the resolution of IT, sales and customer service enquiries.
  • The $400 million investment led by the Qatar Investment Authority in Celonis, a process mining software provider.
  • The $110 million investment led by Sequoia China and SoftBank Group Corp's Vision Fund 2 in Chinese e-commerce software provider Dianxiaomi.
  • The appointments of new CEOs at Carlyle Group (interim), CLPS Technology, Cohesity, Comtech Telecommunications, Enfusion (interim), Eutelsat America, Fastly, GlobalLogic, GoTo, MicroStrategy, NetWitness, Paychex, Royal Philips, Saga Communications (interim), SonicWall, upGrad and Xerox.
  • The death of Ed Christian, founder and CEO of Saga Communications.
  • IPOs/listings from ASR Microelectronics (Shanghai), China Mobile (Shanghai), GigaCloud Technology (Nasdaq), Hygon Information Technology (Shanghai), Ji'an Mankun Technology (Shenzhen Stock Exchange's ChiNext board), Jianzhi Education Technology Group Company (Nasdaq), LoopMedia (NYSE), Mobilicom (Nasdaq), OneConnect (Hong Kong), Shanghai United Imaging Healthcare Co (China’s Nasdaq-like STAR market), Syrma SGS Technology (India) and ZeroFox (NYSE).

Research results and predictions

  • According to IDC, the Southern Africa personal computing device market, which is made up of desktops, notebooks, workstations and tablets, experienced a year-on-year decline of 3.7% in the first half of 2022, with 1.42 million units shipped.

Stock market changes

  • JSE All share index: up 1.8%
  • FTSE100: Up 0.1%
  • DAX: Down 3.8%
  • NYSE (Dow): Down 1.7%
  • S&P 500: Down 1.8%
  • Nasdaq: Down 2%
  • Nikkei225: Up 3% (includes highest close this year)
  • Hang Seng: Up 0.1%
  • Shanghai: Down 0.5%

Final word

Look out for Thoma Bravo acquiring Darktrace.

Also, Fortune magazine has published its 2022 Global 500 list. The following, from a technology perspective, were noticed:

  • New entrants included Qualcomm at number 429.
  • Highest gainers included China Electronics Technology Group at 233 (up 121 places), SK Hynix at 373 (up 79 places) and Xiaomi at 266 (up 72 places).
  • Highest losers included Fujitsu at 466 (down 88 places), Telefonica at 300 (down 77 places), Pegatron at 311 (down 76 places), KDDI at 281 (down 64 places), Toshiba at 480 (down 60 places), Cisco at 274 (down 53 places) and IBM at 168 (down 47 places).
  • Ousted companies included the BT Group (was 436), Ericsson (was 480), Flex (was 499), HPE (was 453), NEC (was 472) and Nokia (was 485).