Oracle increases PeopleSoft bid

Oracle increases PeopleSoft bid

Oracle raised its bid for PeopleSoft to US$26 per share on Wednesday, boosting the all-cash offer's total to $9.4 billion.

Oracle began trying to acquire rival enterprise software maker PeopleSoft last June, initially offering PeopleSoft shareholders $16 per share, totaling $5.1 billion, for control of the company. Analysts and shareholders said the company was offering too little for PeopleSoft, and Oracle raised its bid to $19.50 per share. After PeopleSoft closed its August acquisition of J.D. Edwards & Co., increasing the number of shares in the company, the price tag for the acquisition climbed to $8.3 billion.

Wednesday's new bid marks the first time Oracle has offered shareholders a significant premium on PeopleSoft's trading price. Shares of PeopleSoft (PSFT) ended trading Tuesday on the Nasdaq exchange at $21.89, 19 percent lower than the $26 Oracle says it will pay.

Oracle also extended for the sixth time the deadline on its bid. Previously set to expire Feb. 13, the offer to shareholders is now valid through March 12.

This offer represents Oracle's final price, Oracle Chairman and Chief Financial Officer Jeff Henley said in a written statement.

One obstacle to the attempted hostile takeover remains regulatory clearances from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the European Union (EU). The EU said recently it will complete its inquiry by April 21. The DOJ has not announced a timeline, but Oracle said Wednesday it expects a DOJ decision before the March 12 conclusion of its offer.

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