Thursday, 1st May 2008
Shortly after completing my piece on Digita Personal Tax software
http://web.vivavip.com/forum/LiveWire/read.php?i=5595 I read the news that the company had been acquired by Thomson Reuters http://www.thomsonreuters.com/.
http://digbig.com/4wwbt. In this press release Helen Owers, President & COO of Thomson International Legal & Regulatory, describes the acquisition as building on the recent acquisition of PowerTax https://www.powertax.com.au/pt/main.jsp in Australia. ThomsonReuters already offers a number of tax and accounting services and software in the US. Managing Director of Digita http://www.digita.com/, Jerry Rihll, will keep his current role and the company will continue to be based in Exmouth, Devon. It will be linked up with ThomsonReuters’ professional services business in the UK, Sweet & Maxwell http://www.sweetandmaxwell.co.uk/.
In an article on Accounting Web http://digbig.com/4wwca Digita is reported as having rebuffed previous takeover offers. One of the original founders is nearing retirement and the reason for considering a sale now is to help with succession planning. It is also likely to be the case that Digita needed to be part of a larger organisation to grow its business. From ThomsonReuters’ perspective, having grown to be the number one legal and accounting service in the US, the acquisition helps expand its footprint in the UK. The acquisition also brings ThomsonReuters back into the accountancy market in the UK. Previously the Thomson Tax name and tax reference products were part of Gee publishing. This was closed down in June 2000 and Gee itself later merged with Sweet & Maxwell in 2001. http://www.sweetandmaxwell.co.uk/about/gee.aspx.
At the same time as this deal was going through Wolters Kluwer http://www.wolterskluwer.com/WK/ was in the process of buying MYOB’s UK business division. http://digbig.com/4wwce. Wolters Kluwer acquired 90% of the UK and Ireland businesses for GBP 35.5 million. At the end of April MYOB sold the remaining 10% to Mamut ASA http://digbig.com/4wwcf for a cash payment of GBP1.7 million. MYOB has decided to focus on its markets in Australia and New Zealand, as well as looking for growth opportunities in Asia. MYOB was advised by Helfen Corporate Advisory and KPMG Corporate Finance (UK) on this transaction.
At the end of March we reported on comments made by Wolters Kluwer’s CEO, Nancy McKinstry, that the company was planning to make acquisitions in 2008
http://web.vivavip.com/forum/LiveWire/read.php?i=5240. We will continue to track the company and report on other acquisitions as they happen.
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