UPDATE 1-Australia’s Citadel Group gets $326 mln bid from Pacific Equity

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By Reuters Staff2 Min Read(Adds chairman quote, details on proposal, background, and special dividend)Sept 14 (Reuters) – Citadel Group Ltd on Monday said an entity owned by the country’s biggest private equity firm Pacific Equity Partners (PEP) proposed to acquire the Australian software company for A$448.6 million ($326.49 million).Tech-focused companies are seen as winners in the COVID-19 era as the shift to working from home drives people to leverage technology to get things done efficiently and remotely.The deal will take place via a scheme of arrangement, with the offer representing a premium of 43.2% to Citadel’s closing price on Friday.Citadel Chairman Peter Leahy said its customers will benefit from access to a broader product suite and service capability with PEP’s backing.The board has recommended that shareholders vote in favour of the deal in the absence of a superior bid, the Canberra-based information technology services provider said.The company, which posted a 25% jump in annual core earnings last month, said it plans to declare a special dividend of up to 15 cents per share that will enable shareholders to receive up to 6.4 cents of franking credit benefits.$1 = 1.3740 Australian dollars Reporting by A K Pranav in Bengaluru; …

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