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Oracle finally bags BEA

By Stuart Turton

Posted on 16 Jan 2008 at 15:24

Oracle has signed a definite agreement to buy BEA for $8.5 billion.

The offer means that Oracle will be paying $19.37 per share, just shy of the $21 BEA had initially demanded. That valuation caused Oracle to walk away from a deal in October, calling it an "impossibly high price for Oracle or any other potential acquirer."

It is believed that BEA's largest shareholder, Carl Icahn, was a driving factor in the renewal of talks. Icahn owns close to 13% of the company, and was so unhappy after the collapse of the deal in October that he wrote an open letter to BEA's management which ominously concluded:

"You should have no doubt that I intend to hold each of you personally responsible to act on behalf of BEA's shareholders in full compliance with the high standards that your fiduciary duties require, especially in light of your past record."

However, it now looks as if Icahn's payday has come with Oracle claiming the deal to be worth $7.2 billion, not taking into account BEA's $1.3 billion in cash.

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