Compuware Said to Attract Private-Equity Buyout Interest

Compuware Corp. (CPWR) has attracted buyout interest from private-equity funds including Apax Partners LLP and Hellman & Friedman LLC, according to people familiar with the situation.

The Detroit-based software company, which rejected a $2.3 billion takeover offer from Elliott Management Corp. in January, also gave management presentations last week to other potential bidders, including Thoma Bravo LLC and Golden Gate Capital Corp., said the people, who declined to be identified because the talks are private. The first round of bids is due in two weeks, the people said yesterday.

Elliott has said new owners could do a better job unlocking the company’s value, citing the attractiveness of assets, such as mainframe software, collaboration technology, project- management tools and performance-management services for cloud and mobile applications. Compuware’s “execution, profitability and growth have meaningfully underperformed” under the existing management, Elliott said when making its offer.

The process is at early stages and a deal might not materialize, the people said.

Eric Kushner, a spokesman for Compuware, declined to comment yesterday. Representatives from Apax Partners, Hellman & Friedman, Thoma Bravo and Golden Gate Capital declined to comment.

Elliott’s Offer

Compuware increased 2.6 percent to $11.95 at the close in New York. Through yesterday, the stock had advanced 28 percent in the past year, compared with a 13 percent gain for the Standard & Poor’s 400 Midcap Index.

Bob Paul, chief executive officer of Compuware, said Elliott Management’s offer of $11 a share significantly undervalued the company, according to a Jan. 25 statement.

Compuware hired Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Allen & Co. to review the bid after Elliott made its offer on Dec. 17. The New York-based hedge fund had an 8.72 percent stake in Compuware as of Feb. 14, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Compuware has an enterprise value of $2.48 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Reuters previously reported interest from Golden Gate.

To contact the reporter on this story: Serena Saitto in New York at ssaitto@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Tom Giles at tgiles5@bloomberg.net; Jeffrey McCracken at jmccracken3@bloomberg.net

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