Perot Systems buys out Indian venture

Looking to expand its outsourcing footprint, the software services company purchases a controlling stake in a joint venture with software firm HCL Technologies.

Perot Systems has become the sole owner of India-based HCL Perot Systems, after buying the 50 percent stake held by HCL Technologies for $105 million.

The joint venture was floated in 1996 by Perot and Indian services company HCL. The Noida, India-based company's assets include about $45 million in cash and short-term investments as of the end of November 2003.

HCL Perot Systems (HPS) has customers in the United States, India, the United Kingdom, Singapore, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Germany, Thailand, Malaysia, Japan and Australia. For the first nine months of 2003, it reported revenue of $78.7 million and a net income of $9.3 million.

The Indian software and services sector seems to be entering a phase of consolidation through mergers and acquisitions. Last week, Infosys Technologies took over Australian firm Expert Information Services.

HCL said Perot's takeover will help resolve "channel and brand conflicts in the marketplace" and help both companies pursue their goals independently. HCL employs 12,000 people, and its revenue in the last fiscal year totaled $390 million. It serves customers in the United States, Japan and the Asia Pacific region.

"Acquiring HPS was a logical step in the development of our onshore/offshore application outsourcing model. Not only does this expand our global software team, but it also provides us with new clients to serve and expands our geographic footprint," Ross Perot, CEO of the Plano, Texas-based company, said in a statement.