Aveva, the London-listed software company, is closing in on an agreement that would see it swallowed by the French industrial group Schneider Electric in a deal worth about £9bn.
Sky News has learnt that the boards of the two companies and their advisers are discussing a price of more than £30-a-share for Schneider to acquire the roughly-40% of Aveva it does not already own.
Banking sources said on Monday that a deal was expected to be struck ahead of a 21 September deadline imposed by the UK takeover watchdog.
At just over £30-a-share, the deal is expected to cost Schneider in the region of £3.5bn.
Given the French company’s existing control of Cambridge-based Aveva through its 60% holding, a full buyout is unlikely to elicit significant criticism about the perceived erosion of Britain’s technology base.
In recent weeks, a flurry of takeover bids from overseas companies and private equity firms has emerged for London-listed technology businesses such as GB Group and MicroFocus.
Aveva is also said by industry executives to be negotiating a series of undertakings relating to its brand and future investment under Schneider’s full ownership.
Shares in Aveva closed on Monday at £29.59, giving the company a market capitalisation of more than £8.8bn.
Investment bankers at Citi are advising Schneider on the deal, while Lazard is advising Aveva.
Aveva declined to comment.