SSA Global to buy Epiphany for $329 million

SSA Global plans to buy CRM maker Epiphany for $329 million in cash, adding another set of distressed enterprise applications to SSA's portfolio.

SSA Global Technologies will acquire CRM (customer relationship management) software maker Epiphany in an all-cash deal the companies valued at US$329 million. The acquisition will add another set of applications to SSA Global's growing portfolio of distressed ERP (enterprise resource planning) technologies.

Epiphany is an eight-year-old company currently caught in the crowded middle of the CRM field. The company makes a suite of sales, service, and call-center applications, with a particular focus on marketing management features. Like many other vendors in the CRM field, it has struggled with declining sales: Epiphany's revenue from new license sales dropped 35 percent last year, while its total revenue dropped 18 percent, to US$79.3 million. It has reported a loss each year since its inception.

SSA Global said it will expand Epiphany's distribution worldwide and use the technology to boost its SSA CRM line of sales and marketing applications. The company, which went public in May, has used acquisitions to assemble an portfolio that includes ERP software Baan and Marcam, along with assorted other supply-chain, financial, human resources and product lifecycle management applications. Like Epiphany, Baan and Marcam were also having a tough time in the market before they were purchased by SSA.

SSA Global will pay US$4.20 per share of Epiphany (ticker symbol: EPNY), a 9 percent premium on Tuesday's closing price of US$3.84. Before the acquisition announcement, shares of Epiphany ended trading Wednesday on the Nasdaq exchange at US$3.90.

Pending shareholder and regulatory approvals, the companies expect the deal to close within three months.

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