SS&C Tech lobs $2.24 billion bid for Australia's Link, improves on Carlyle's offer

(Reuters) - Link Administration Holdings on Monday received a higher A$3.02 billion ($2.24 billion) buyout proposal from SS&C Technologies Holdings Inc, pitting the U.S. software provider against a Carlyle Group-led consortium in the race to buy the shareholder registry firm.

Connecticut-based SS&C gave a non-binding offer of A$5.65 a share, Sydney-based Link said in a statement, a 13.9% premium to its closing price on Monday.

It was 4.6% higher than the sweetened A$5.40 per share offer Link received from private equity firms Carlyle and Pacific Equity Partners.

Link had agreed to open its books to the private equity duo in October, but had flagged that it did not see “compelling value” in the raised takeover offer.

The offer price assumes that no further dividends, distributions or reductions in capital would be paid from the date of the SS&C Proposal, Link said.

Link, which also provides services to fund managers and trading firms, added it would consider the offer from SS&C and asked shareholders to not take any action yet.

SS&C Technologies did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The latest offer, however, did not have any mention of PEXA, an online property transaction firm that Link holds a 44.2% stake in and has been looking to spin-off. Link had rejected an initial proposal from Carlyle and Pacific Equity saying the offer undervalued PEXA.

($1 = 1.3492 Australian dollars)

Reporting by A K Pranav in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni and Rashmi Aich