German business software firm SAP has agreed to acquire its French rival Business Objects for around €4.8bn.
The deal depends on the approval of the French Stock Exchange Authority and the French Finance Ministry, but is likely to be finalised early in the new year.
Previously, SAP had concentrated on more organic growth for its organisation, so this is an unprecedented move.
In a joint statement, SAP and Business Objects said: “Together, SAP and Business Objects intend to offer high-value solutions for process and business-oriented professionals. Business Objects customers will continue to benefit from open, broad and integrated business intelligence solution.”
SAP is the largest business software company in the world and aim to more than double its sales by 2010.
Business Objects made sales of €885m last year, while SAP’s turnover was more than €10bn.
By Joe Griffin