SAP in Talks to Buy Apax-Backed Cloud Startup Signavio

SAP SE is in talks to acquire German enterprise software company Signavio as it seeks to expand its cloud offerings, people with knowledge of the matter said.

An agreement to acquire Berlin-based Signavio could be announced as soon as this week, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. A deal could value Signavio, whose backers include Apax Partners, at about 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion), the people said.

Shares of SAP were up 0.6% at 4:44 p.m. in Frankfurt, giving the company a market value of about 129 billion euros. Negotiations are ongoing, and discussions could still drag on longer or fall apart, the people said.

Representatives for SAP and Apax declined to comment, while a spokesperson for Signavio didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

The potential transaction would add to the $10.5 billion of acquisitions announced by SAP over the past three years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Chief Executive Officer Christian Klein is seeking to turn around the company, which has seen its sales fall during the pandemic. He’s pushing for broader adoption of a suite of new cloud-based products so SAP can better compete with rivals like Inc.

Signavio makes web-based business process management software that companies use to keep track of workflows in their daily operations. Apax Digital, the growth equity arm of Apax Partners, and venture capital firm DTCP invested in Signavio as part of a $177 million funding round in 2019.

Customers of Signavio include Deloitte, Liberty Mutual Insurance, NBCUniversal and SAP, according to a press release at the time. All of Signavio’s founders worked at SAP at one point, and the startup is an SAP business partner as the two companies’ software platforms can be connected to work together.

SAP is in the process of bringing another acquired company back to the public markets. Its Qualtrics International Inc. unit, which makes customer-survey software, on Monday boosted the price range for a planned U.S. initial public offering that could raise as much as $1.46 billion.

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