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Meridian soars after Quantum buys company

Quantum Corp. (Nasdaq: QNTM) agreed on Tuesday to acquire Meridian Data Inc. (Nasdaq: MDCD) in an all-stock transaction valued at $85 million. Meridian shares hit a 52-week high at 8 11/16 in earlier trading.

Meridian Data shareholders will receive 0.489 of a share of Quantum stock for each share of Meridian Data stock, but these terms are subject to adjustment based on the trading range of Quantum stock prior to the completion of the deal. The current price tag is based on Quantum's Monday closing share price of 19 1/4.

"Our acquisition of Meridian Data is another major step in the execution of our storage systems business strategy, after the successful acquisition and integration of ATL Products in 1998,'' said Quantum CEO Peter van Cuylenburg in a statement.

"Two of the key objectives we have outlined in this strategy are to enter the rapidly growing market for network attached storage appliances in the near term and, longer term, to develop software to support embedded intelligence in storage devices and systems. Our acquisition of Meridian Data's Snap! Server product line and its storage operating system software will allow us to accelerate our progress toward both goals," said van Cuylenburg.

In other news, Quantum said it earlier that it plans to buy back $200 million of its shares in the open market over time. Quantum rose 11/16 to 19 15/16 in late morning trade.