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OMERS makes $231.4-million bid for Logibec Add to ...

An arm of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System is offering to buy Logibec Groupe Informatique Ltée in a $231.4-million deal and take the Montreal-based software company private.

Logibec, which specializes in information systems for the health and social services sector, would continue to operate under essentially the same management team, but as a private company.

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Through an acquisition subsidiary called OPE LGI Inc., OMERS is offering $26 cash for each Logibec share, about 17 per cent above the stock's closing price on Wednesday.

"Logibec is a Canadian success story with a proven management team," said Paul Renaud, president and chief executive officer of OMERS Private Equity Inc.

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"We look forward to working with management to continue its strategy to further expand its business in both Canada and the United States," Mr. Renaud said in a statement.

Two significant blocks of shares have agreed to tender their shares to the offer.

Société Générale de Financement du Québec, a provincial agency, has agreed to tender its shares in Logibec - representing about 5.4 per cent of the total outstanding.

In addition, Logibec president and CEO Claude Roy and his family have agreed to tender their shares, representing 23 per cent of the total.

Mr. Roy intends to resign after the transaction closes but OMERS expects to retain most of the other senior management of the company.

"The time has now come for a new group of owners to sponsor the next stage of the company's growth," Mr. Roy said in a statement.

"Our vision from the outset has always been to build Logibec into a Quebec-based North American leader."

OMERS owns Canada's largest medical laboratory company, LifeLabs, which provides more than 50 million medical tests a year for patients and doctors and employs 3,000 people across Canada.

The pension fund bought the business, formerly owned by MDS Inc., about three years ago for $1.3-billion when MDS restructured to focus on other businesses.

Last fall, OMERS-owned Maxxam acquired the B.C.-based lab company Cantest Ltd., including its laboratory locations in Victoria and Winnipeg.

Cantest is British Columbia's largest independent analytical laboratory business, specializing in environmental, food and pharmaceutical laboratory services.

Maxxam, owned by OMERS' private capital unit, is Canada's largest independent analytical lab company, with expertise in environmental laboratory services, petroleum services, food safety and sciences and forensic and DNA services.

OMERS is one of Canada's largest pension plans, with more than $43-billion in assets invested around the world in stocks, bonds, real estate, infrastructure and private equity.

The fund provides retirement benefits to more than 390,000 current and former employees of more than 900 municipal governments, school boards, libraries, police and fire departments, children's aid societies and other local agencies throughout Ontario.

The Canadian Press

 

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