Feeds

Isoft – Torex marriage postponed

Proposed merger sent back to UK Court of Appeal

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

A new ruling by the UK Court of Appeal means that the proposed $1.2 billion merger between healthcare services providers Isoft Group and Torex is no closer to being given the green light. This setback may reduce their chances of winning lucrative NHS services contracts.

The UK Court of Appeal has ruled that the Competition Appeals Tribunal "adopted a wrong test" in assessing and judging that the planned merger would be anti-competitive. The Office of Fair Trading says that the ruling is good news since it means that the OFT now has more control over the merger process, and is able to establish what tests need to be applied to mergers and acquisitions.

The Isoft and Torex merger case is the first test of the new Enterprise Act of 2003, that involved the proposed deal being cast into doubt last December after the CAT reacted to concerns from Australian rival firm IBA Health that it could be anti-competitive.

However, the OFT believed that there would not be any lessening of competition in the UK marketplace despite both Isoft and Torex having strong positions in the UK healthcare software services market. The OFT then launched its appeal with the Court of Appeal to confirm whether CAT had employed the wrong tests to come up with its judgment.

The ruling by the Court of Appeal means that the merger is going to be passed back to the OFT for consideration once again. The whole process could be drawn out even further and it is likely to be sent again to the Competition Commission for assessment.

Any further delay to the judgment on whether the merger will go ahead is likely to cause a serious headache for Torex and Isoft, which have both bid to secure a larger share of the multiple-billion dollars' worth of NHS services contracts recently handed out to Accenture, CSC, Fujitsu and BT.

The companies claim that the merged group would be better placed to service the requirements of the National Application Service Providers and the LSPsin the five geographic regions in England. Isoft has already lost out on a £896 million piece of the final NHS IT services contract, which was awarded to a consortium led by Fujitsu Services in January.

Source: ComputerWire/Datamonitor

Related research: Datamonitor, 'Strategic Enterprise Networking Opportunities", (DMTC0849).

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Oracle reveals 32-core, 10 BEEELLION-transistor SPARC M7
New chip scales to 1024 cores, 8192 threads 64 TB RAM, at speeds over 3.6GHz
Docker kicks KVM's butt in IBM tests
Big Blue finds containers are speedy, but may not have much room to improve
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Gartner's Special Report: Should you believe the hype?
Enough hot air to carry a balloon to the Moon
Flash could be CHEAPER than SAS DISK? Come off it, NetApp
Stats analysis reckons we'll hit that point in just three years
Dell The Man shrieks: 'We've got a Bitcoin order, we've got a Bitcoin order'
$50k of PowerEdge servers? That'll be 85 coins in digi-dosh
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.