A recent Bloomberg article reported that Concur Technologies (NASDAQ: CNQR) had enlisted the aid of a major investment bank to explore the possible sale of the company. The article stated that Concur had approached both Oracle and SAP, in addition to other technology companies. Concur is a leading provider of cloud-based travel and expense management software for businesses of all sizes. Some firms on Wall Street think it is a good fit for both Oracle and SAP.
The big question for investors is one that may surround the entire software as a service (SaaS) and enterprise software business segment. Is it time for some of the smaller, more agile companies that are niche specific like Concur to end up as targets for bigger companies looking to add additional silos of products to their current offerings? The analysts at FBR think the trend of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) likely will pick up going forward. We screened the sector for stocks that could be potential candidates.
Citrix Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CTXS) is considered a top-rated stock to buy at almost every Wall Street firm that we cover. IBM’s software unit missed earnings badly last year and Citrix is poised to grab business in this arena. By reason, investors could consider that Big Blue may be keeping an eye on the company, looking to strengthen existing business while eliminating a very formidable contender in the space. The Thomson/First Call price target for the stock is $68.48. The stock closed above that Wednesday at $70.67. Be advised that Citrix has been considered a potential tech buyout target for years, and many other suitors have been speculated about in the past.
Red Hat Inc. (NYSE: RHT) provides open source software solutions primarily to enterprise customers worldwide. The company develops and offers operating system, middleware, virtualization, storage and cloud technologies. The stock remains a favorite of CNBC’s Jim Cramer, and it is expected to show strong sales gains the rest of this year. That growth could prove attractive to anybody, from an IBM to Microsoft, looking to add or enhance offerings in the space. The consensus price target is $66.14. The former high-flyer closed Wednesday at $61.52.