Green light for SCISYS’ £79m takeover by Canadian tech group

October 2, 2019

Specialist IT group SCISYS’s £78.9m acquisition by Canadian tech giant CGI has been given the go-ahead by UK competition watchdogs.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said it had decided not to refer the deal to a phase 2 investigation based on the information available to it. 

The CMA launched its merger inquiry on August 14, exactly two months after directors at Chippenham-headquartered SCISYS, which has a base in Bristol, announced to shareholders that they had unanimously accepted the surprise approach by CGI.

At the time the offer represented a 24.6% premium on SCISYS’ share price.

SCISYS chairman Mike Love, pictured, who has been at the firm since 1981, said the directors viewed the offer as “a wholesale endorsement of the success SCISYS has achieved to date”.

“We believe SCISYS and CGI are highly complementary businesses sharing similar values and are confident that the combination will enable SCISYS to benefit from CGI’s size, strength and global reach,” he said.

Montreal-headquartered CGI said SCISYS’ industry-leading expertise and IP-based services and solutions provided it with “an opportunity to globalise certain platforms utilizing the broader CGI geographic footprint and client relationships”. 

CGI was founded in 1976 and today is a leading IT and business consulting services firm with more than 77,000 employees across the world.

SCISYS was launched in 1980 as Science Systems, working primarily in the space sector with clients such as the European Space Agency.

It has since grown organically and through a string of strategic acquisitions and now supplies bespoke software systems and support services to blue-chip clients in the media & broadcast, government, defence and commerce sectors.

The group, which also has a base in Bristol, employs around 650 staff across its four UK and four German offices. Its blue-chip customers also include the Environment Agency, the Ministry of Defence, Airbus Defence & Space, the BBC and the National Trust.

The CMA’s comment period closed on August 28. Today it said: “The CMA has cleared the anticipated acquisition by CGI Group Holdings Europe Limited of SCISYS Group plc,” adding that the full text of its decision would be available shortly.



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