UPDATE 3-Software firm Kewill receives 117 mln stg approach

* Says indicative offer worth 130 pence per share

* Shares up as much as 27 percent

(Adds background on M&A in sector)

By Sarah Young and Anirban Sen

LONDON/BANGALORE, May 14 (BestGrowthStock) – Kewill Plc (KWL.L: ) said
on Friday it received an approach pitched at 130 pence per
share, sending the British software firm’s stock up as much as
27 percent to a nine-year high.

The indicative offer values the company, which provides
software to freight forwarders, distribution companies and
express parcel groups, at 116.8 million pounds ($170.3 million).

U.S. technology group Oracle (ORCL.O: ) or its arch rival
Germany’s SAP (SAPG.DE: ) could be behind the approach, said KBC
Peel Hunt analyst Simon Strong.

Merger and acquisition activity in the technology sector has
sprung back to life as the shift to mobile and cloud computing
changes the IT landscape, and companies position themselves for
an economic upturn. [IDnN13250035]

SAP made the latest move on Wednesday, when it agreed to buy
database system firm Sybase Inc for $5.8 billion in a bid to
move ahead of Oracle in the mobile data market. [ID:nLDE64C06M]

Strong said a bidder would probably have to increase their
offer to secure Kewill. He said he believed shareholders should
not accept anything less than 175 pence per share.

“It (Kewill) operates in a logistics niche and both of those
two, which are major software houses … don’t have very strong
products in that area and Kewill consistently wins against them
in pitches and so that’s normally a recipe for consolidation,”
said Strong.

Shares in Kewill, whose customers include Nintendo
(7974.OS: ), FedEx (FDX.N: ) and Whirlpool (WHR.N: ), were up 23
percent at 123 pence at 1315 GMT, after earlier rising 27
percent to their highest level since 2001.

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(Additional reporting by Paul Sandle; Editing by Maju Samuel
and Hans Peters)

UPDATE 3-Software firm Kewill receives 117 mln stg approach