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Decision on Satyam Bidders Likely on Monday

11 April, 2009

Satyam Computer Services will select a successful acquirer on Monday, April 13. The board is also learnt to have set an informal floor price and may not consider the bids if they are too low. 

If the financial bids are higher than the board’s informal floor price, the highest bidder will be declared as the winner, reports The Economic Times. However, if the difference between the prices quoted by the highest bidder and the others is less than 10%, the other bidders would have the option to take the bidding process to the next round. This would involve an open auction with the highest price in the earlier round becoming the floor price for the next. 

As per the schedule prepared by the Satyam board, the bidders would submit the technical and the financial bids simultaneously on Monday morning in the presence of former Supreme Court chief justice SP Bharucha. Chief justice Bharucha has been appointed by the Company Law Board to oversee the sale process. All the bidders are expected to clear the technical criteria. Their financial bids will then be opened. 

Interested parties can acquire an up to 31% stake in the company and an additional 20% through an open offer.

Currently only four suitors are understood to be in the fray for acquiring Satyam. These include software firm Tech Mahindra, engineering giant Larsen and Toubro (L&T), private equity firm WL Ross and NASDAQ listed Cognizant Technology Solutions. 

After IBM’s exit from the race, it is now speculated that WL Ross may put a joint bid Cognizant. The government appointed board of Satyam had earlier laid emphasis on the bidder’s capability to manage an IT firm of the scale and complexity of Satyam. This may be the basis for the speculations that WL Ross and Cognizant may partner to bid for Satyam. WL Ross’s interest in acquiring Satyam is apparent as it is known for acquiring distressed firms and turning them around. 

It also speculated that Satyam board member, Deepak Parekh may have to stay away from the bidding process if Tech Mahindra decides to bid for the fraud- hit IT services firm as Parekh is also on the board of Mahindra & Mahindra, the promoter of Tech Mahindra. LIC executive director SB Mainak would also not participate in the bidding process on Monday as LIC holds a significant stake in L&T, which is perceived to be the frontrunner for taking over Satyam. 

L&T has emerged as the strongest contender in the race for acquiring the IT firm. L&T already holds 12.04% stake in Satyam. Tech Mahindra, too, is seen as a strong contender. It is reported to have called for a board meeting on Sunday. 

Satyam board had earlier set April 9 as the date for submitting the bids but had to extend it to April 13 since the bidders asked for more information.

 


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Decision on Satyam Bidders Likely on Monday

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