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The Montreal tech consulting firm CGI Inc. GIB-A-T plans to deepen its presence in Europe by buying a majority stake in the Paris-based digital-services company Umanis SA for about $308-million, hoping to later acquire the remaining shares.

CGI said early Friday that its subsidiary CGI France SAS had agreed to buy all of the Paris-listed shares held by Umanis CEO Olivier Pouligny and the company MURA SAS, at €17.15 ($23.79) per share. That represents about 70.6 per cent of Umanis’s total shares. Once the transaction is complete, the companies said, CGI will launch a mandatory tender offer to buy Umanis’s remaining shares for the same price.

The total value would be about €310-million, or $436-million. The €17.15-per-share value represents a 45.96-per-cent premium on Umanis’s Thursday closing price. The companies expect the initial purchase to be completed by the end of the second quarter.

“The combination of CGI’s operations and those of Umanis will further deepen our presence and positioning across Western and Southern Europe,” CGI’s chief executive officer, George Schindler, said in a news release, adding that the deal would enhance his company’s profitability.

Umanis’s executive chairman, Laurent Piepszownik, founded the company in 1990. He said in the release that he and CGI share a “common vision.”

Shares of Umanis ceased trading at the time of the announcement, but the companies said trades would resume Monday.

CGI employs more than 80,000 staff and consultants worldwide in a variety of information-technology and consulting roles. It brought in $12.13-billion in revenue in the past fiscal year. Umanis said its annual revenue is about €246-million, and that it employs nearly 3,000 people in France and across Spain, Luxembourg, Morocco and Switzerland.

The companies said Société Générale was CGI’s financial adviser for the deal and Bredin Prat was its legal adviser. Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank and Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier advised Umanis and MURA.

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