NCR rings up another software purchase with Retalix

Contact: Brenon Daly

NCR will hand over $763.5m in cash for Retalix, the latest example of an old-line hardware vendor using M&A to build up its more valuable software and services business. The deal is actually the second significant software acquisition by the company formerly known as National Cash Register, and takes the equity value of the transactions to a collective $2bn. In mid-2011, NCR dropped $1.2bn on fellow publicly traded company Radiant Systems.

NCR leaned on the credit market to finance nearly all of its purchase of Radiant, the largest acquisition the company has done. It will add a bit more debt to cover the just-announced reach for Retalix. An Israeli company, Retalix has no debt and about $133m in cash, lowering the net cost of the business to roughly $650m.

In comparing NCR’s two software plays, the valuations line up rather closely. NCR’s bid for Radiant valued the company (on the basis of enterprise value) at about 3.2 times trailing sales and 21x trailing EBITDA. For Retalix, the comparable figures are 2.4x trailing sales and 25x trailing EBITDA.

Further, the premium NCR paid for Radiant, compared with the stock price 30 days prior, came in at 47%; for Retalix it was 50%. A final similarity between the two deals: the advisers. J.P. Morgan Securities banked NCR in both deals while Jefferies & Company worked for both Radiant and Retalix.

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