Oak won't bend in Pivotal deal

FRAMINGHAM (12/05/2003) - The way has been cleared for the proposed takeover of ailing CRM software maker Pivotal Corp. now that one of the company's suitors has refused to up the ante.

Equity firm Oak Investment Partners said in a statement Thursday that it wouldn't increase its standing all-cash offer for Pivotal. Also partnering with Oak in that proposed buyout was CRM software maker Talisma Corp.

The duo originally offered to pay US$1.78 per share for Pivotal. Then on Monday, CDC Software, a unit of Hong Kong-based Chinadotcom Corp., trumped that deal. The roughly $52 million CDC bid would put in Pivotal shareholders' pockets either $2 in cash per share of Pivotal stock or $2.14 in cash and Chinadotcom stock in exchange for Pivotal shares.

Oak general partner Fredric Harman said, "Oak has concluded that there is no financial justification for increasing the price of its proposed acquisition of Pivotal at this time."

Under the agreement with Oak, Pivotal was unable to pursue the CDC bid until Oak had decided whether to match it. Oak had until yesterday to increase the offer.

"Oak maintains a tremendous respect for the Pivotal management team, its employees and the board of directors. We will continue to follow Pivotal's operational progress and developments in the process and may revisit our interest in Pivotal in the future," Harman said.

The IDG News Service contributed to this report.

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