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Bonds News

Fidelity National to buy eFunds for $1.8 billion

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Mortgage processor Fidelity National Information Services Inc. FIS.N said on Wednesday it would acquire eFunds Corp. EFD.N, which processes financial transactions, for $1.8 billion, expanding its distribution capabilities and boosting its product offerings.

EFunds shareholders will receive $36.50 per share, a 5.5 percent premium over the shares’ Tuesday closing price of

$34.60.

Jacksonville, Florida-based Fidelity National, which says about half of all U.S. residential mortgages are processed using its software, expects the deal to yield annual cost saving of $65 million and boost its earnings in 2008.

EFunds generated revenue of $552 million and operating income of $83 million in 2006.

Fidelity National will finance the purchase with cash on hand and recently secured long-term debt commitments. The deal is expected to close by the end of the third quarter.

Banc of America Securities and Bear Stearns advised Fidelity National, while BlackRock and Goldman Sachs advised eFunds.

Shares of Scottsdale, Arizona-based eFunds were up 60 cents, or 1.7 percent, to $35.20 in morning trade on the New York Stock Exchange, while shares of Fidelity National climbed $1.23, or 2.3 percent, to $54.33, also on the NYSE.

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