Mastersoft targets Auckland acquisition

Australian company expects announcement soon

Data quality specialist Mastersoft Systems is on the acquisition trail in New Zealand.

Chief executive Gary Buttsworth says the privately-held Australian company expects to buy a local firm within two months.

His statement comes at a time when a takeover bid for the company from UK-based Sirius Corp failed, because of due diligence issues. Mastersoft had planned a backdoor listing on the Australian Securities Exchange.

The deal is not entirely dead. Buttsworth says there are structural issues to be addressed and that the door is still open.

“There are no changes to our strategy [for a backdoor listing]. It’s just that there may be a change to the timing.

He wouldn’t name the New Zealand company, other than to say it makes enterprise software in the business process management space. Computerworld understands the target company employs around 30 people in Auckland.

Calls to two such company's, XSOL and Promapp, led to denials of any talks.

“The principals are based in Australia. We are currently doing due diligence on each other,” Buttsworth says. “We deliberately sought out an opportunity in New Zealand, targeting large clients to improve our scale.”

Mastersoft set up a local operation eight years ago. Its major customers include the Ministry of Justice, NZTA, NZ Post, the Ministry of Health and Telecom.

The Australian parent company, which has around 60 staff, last week announced revenue of $A12.5 million for the past financial year, up 18 percent.

A year ago Buttsworth said a lack of venture capital had hindered the company’s entry into emerging economies where its niche products should find ready buyers. This year, Mastersoft entered India to support insurance and banking clients that are forming joint ventures there.

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