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$4.2 billion deal for banking company CheckFree

Fiserv Inc., a provider of information management systems and services, is buying the online banking company CheckFree Corporation for $48 a share, or about $4.2 billion in cash, the companies said Thursday.

The offer is a 30 percent premium over CheckFree's closing price of $36.83 on Wednesday. Executives said that combining the two companies, which serve banks and other financial institutions, would produce cost savings, but did not say how many, if any, jobs will be shed.

The two companies employ a total of 27,000 people. The deal, set to close by year-end, is worth $4.22 billion based on the purchase price of $48 a share and the 87.9 million CheckFree shares outstanding as of April 30. The two sides value the deal at $4.4 billion, which includes an unspecified amount of debt.

The combined company will have revenue of about $6 billion. CheckFree shares rose $8.57, or 23.3 percent, to $45.40 on Thursday after rising to a 52-week high of $46.10 earlier in the session. Fiserv shares rose 31 cents, to $49.50.

Fiserv, based in Brookfield, Wis., said that CheckFree, based in Norcross, Ga., had complementary technology, services and business models. CheckFree provides electronic billing and payment, online banking and investment management technology services, among others.

Fiserv's core processing base consists of smaller and midmarket banks, credit unions and thrifts. CheckFree serves mostly larger banks. CheckFree's chairman and chief executive, Peter Kight, who founded the company in 1981, declined to say if there were any other bidders for his company.

Source: The New York Times
Date: 08.08.2007 [67]
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