Belfast Telegraph

First Derivatives sole owner of Kx in £47.5m deal

Margaret Canning

By Margaret Canning

Northern Ireland software and consulting plc First Derivatives has announced it's acquired the entirety of tech firm Kx Systems in a $53.8m (£47.5m) deal.

The company, which is based in Newry, is now sole owner of the US business following the transaction, which closed last week.

Acquiring shares in Kx has enabled First Derivatives to adapt its business - which was focused first on financial clients - in other sectors, including Formula 1 and online retail.

Minority shareholders and Kx co-founders Arthur Whitney and Janet Lustgarten also receive $12m for dividends otherwise payable by October 2021.

The transaction represents the final stage of a deal first announced in 2014.

First Derivatives chief executive Brian Conlon said: "Since we acquired a controlling interest in Kx Systems in October 2014 we have invested heavily across our business to target multiple new industries. The agreement to acquire 100% of Kx Systems provides certainty for the group and its shareholders as we seek to realise the considerable potential we see for further growth."

First Derivatives, which is listed on the AIM, grew its turnover to £186m in the year to February 28 - up 23% on a year earlier.

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