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Micro Focus Shares Rally Amid Speculation of Takeover Approach

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March 2 (Bloomberg) -- Micro Focus International Plc surged the most in 15 months in London trading amid speculation the software company may be a takeover target.

The shares jumped 9.5 percent to 311.6 pence, the biggest gain since November 2009, as of the 4:30 p.m. close in London. That gives the Newbury, England-based company a market value of 641 million pounds ($1 billion).

“Bid rumors are doing the rounds,” said Will Hedden, a sales trader at IG Index in London. “We saw the newswire earlier about SAP being a possible buyer, since then we heard there may be another. It’s not surprising that they are a potential target after that sharp fall last month.”

Micro Focus tumbled 26 percent on Feb. 15 after saying quarterly earnings failed to meet its forecasts.

Charles Palmer, a spokesman for Micro Focus at Financial Dynamics, declined to comment.

To contact the reporters on this story: Andrew Rummer in London at arummer@bloomberg.net; Finbarr Flynn in Dublin at fflynn3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Merritt at dmerritt1@bloomberg.net