Softpro bases global plans on South African buyout

By Fakir Hassen, IANS
Thursday, July 2, 2009

JOHANNESBURG - The acquisition of the small but well-placed South African software company Cura by Softpro of Hyderabad has presented an opportunity to the Indian firm to become the multinational company that it aspires to be, Softpro chairman Bala Reddy said here.

“Cura is an $8-million company which we want to build into a $200-million governance, risk and compliance leader within five years,” Reddy told IANS Wednesday at a dinner to celebrate the $90-million buyout.

“We will support the Cura team with whatever support is required. We will bring in the capital, the skills and whatever else is required to achieve that goal.”

Calling the acquisition the “first step” of opportunities in the African country, Reddy said his company wanted “long-term relationship with South Africa and its people”.

Cura was chosen after a detailed search because it was regarded as a visionary company in the governance, risk and compliance (GRC) area by leading analysts, the chairman said.

“Because of the recent meltdown in the world economy, it was shown that the GRC area did not receive the attention it should have.”

“We see a huge potential in the GRC sector as governments and corporates place ever greater emphasis on risk to protect their economies and businesses respectively. The recent downfall of Satyam in India showed that governance was a failure, highlighting the urgent need for GRC to protect against fraud and related issues,” Reddy added.

The proprietary technologies developed by Softpro in India would be licensed for adaptation in the South African market, where Cura already has several major companies as clients, he said.

Avi Eyal, chief executive of Cura, also welcomed the acquisition, saying it “shows that South African software companies can grow profitably and make it on the world stage”.

“Softpro has a great vision and buys into our vision of what we want to achieve and the acquisition will help us expand our market share; gain us a new market in India; introduce us to other markets that Softpro is into today; inject capital into the business; and give us the scalability to compete on a global level,” Eyal said.

In addition to growing existing staff and research and development in South Africa, Cura would in coming months “double and triple” this in India with Softpro, the chief executive added.

Filed under: Satyam, Technology, World

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