Activist investor Starboard Value is urging ACI Worldwide Inc. to explore a sale, arguing that a takeover is more likely to create value for shareholders than the payment company’s standalone plan released last month.
Starboard Managing Member Jeff Smith said in a letter to the company Wednesday that its revenue growth and margin targets are so conservative that it “seems almost impossible for management to miss.”
ACI Worldwide should instead hire advisers to run a sales process, Smith said. A wide range of strategic and financial buyers would be interested in acquiring the company, he said.
“We have reason to believe that some of these potential buyers may have approached ACI to express interest,” Smith said in the letter, a copy of which was reviewed by Bloomberg.
Shares of ACI Worldwide climbed 8.8% to $36.31 apiece at 9:59 a.m. in New York Wednesday, after earlier jumping as much as 10.2%.
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