Oracle extends offer for PeopleSoft again

Oracle's hostile bid to acquire rival enterprise software maker PeopleSoft for $7.7bn (£4.3bn) is set to continue for a bit...

Oracle's hostile bid to acquire rival enterprise software maker PeopleSoft for $7.7bn (£4.3bn) is set to continue for a bit longer.

Oracle has filed an offer extension which pushes the expiration deadline from 27 August to 10 September. Oracle has extended its bid's deadline 10 times since launching the takeover campaign in June 2003.

In July, the trial phase of a US government lawsuit to stop Oracle's takeover bid came to an end. In that suit, the US Department of Justice argued Oracle's acquisition of PeopleSoft would stifle competition and lead to higher prices in the enterprise software market.

The judge's decision in that case, set to occur in the weeks following the trial's end on 20 July, is believed to be imminent.

More than a year ago, soon after Oracle announced its takeover plans, it had 34.8 million shares tendered into the offer. That number steadily dwindled over the next year, to a low of 4.7 million tendered shares in mid-July.

Oracle said it now has 21.7 million tendered shares - 6% of PeopleSoft's outstanding total. Oracle is offering shareholders $21 cash per share, a premium on PeopleSoft's recent trading price.

Sumner Lemon and Stacy Cowley writes IDG News Service

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