Sema, LHS to merge in $US4.7 billion stock deal

Telecommunications software and services providers Sema Group and LHS Group have agreed to an all-stock merger transaction valued at $US4.7 billion, in an effort to create a mobile communications software powerhouse, the companies announced yesterday.

Under the terms of the agreement, London-based Sema will swap 2.6 shares for each share of Atlanta-based LHS, the shares of which have been valued for the deal at $69.70 per share, Sema and LHS said in a joint statement.

Sema's owners will hold a majority 63-percent stake while LHS shareholders will own 27 percent of the combined company. Subject to shareholder and regulatory approval, the deal is expected to be completed early in the third quarter, the companies said.

Shareholders will receive detailed information on the planned merger within two months, Sema and LHS said.

The combined company will offer customer care, billing, messaging and prepaid software and services to the mobile telecommunications market, with 2,600 employees and 350 customer sites worldwide generating $400 million in annual revenue, Sema and LHS said.

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