Asseco plans shopping spree, has Russian software firm in its sights

One of Europe's largest software companies is looking to acquire a Russian banking software company, not long after its plans for a buy on home turf failed.

Asseco Poland, the largest software company in the country and one of the biggest in Europe, is looking to the East for expansion.

Asseco, which specialises in software for the banking and financial sector, is in talks to buy a Russian company after a domestic deal fell through.

Asseco Poland
Asseco Poland is looking to expand into Russia. Image credit: Asseco

The company announced the proposed acquisition this week, and expects the deal to go through in October, according to reports.

While the name of the Russian business that Asseco hopes to buy remains under wraps, Adam Goral, Asseco's CEO, described the acquisition target as one of the largest software vendors serving the banking sector. Russian companies that fit that somewhat broad description include CFT, Diasoft, Canopus and FORSBanking Systems.

According to Goral, the move would give Asseco access to a €14bn market — twice that available in Poland. Any move into Russia would not be Asseco's first foray outside its home turf, with the company having already established itself in Romania and Turkey.

The announcement comes not long after Asseco's failed hostile acquisition attempt for local rival Sygnity. That 250m zloty (€62.5m) deal fell through when the regulator's approval for the buy came two days after Asseco's own deadline for closing the deal had passed.

Asseco is the largest software company in Poland in terms of revenue, and the seventh largest in Europe. Its consolidated revenue in 2011 was 4.96bn zlotys (€1.2bn).

At home, Asseco is experiencing ever-fiercer competition: the company lost out in its bid to develop an information system for PZU, the insurance company formerly owned by the state, after the deal went to American company Guidewire.