Sage starts the search for its second broker

David Hellier
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SAGE, the business software and services group, has invited banks to apply to become its second broker alongside Deutsche Bank.

The group, which has recently been the subject of takeover speculation, is one of the only FTSE 100 companies to have just one broker advising it.

A number of banks are believed to be interested in pitching for the business, including Citi, Goldman Sachs, BoA Merrill Lynch and Credit Suisse.

Being a corporate broker bestows on a bank the status of a trusted adviser, which gives it a good chance of winning commission-based work on capital raisings and other transactions. The broking job itself does not tend to be very lucrative.

Deutsche is likely to be retained, with a second broker brought in as a joint adviser.

“Having a single broker is less and less usual these days,” said somebody close to the group. “You may as well seek advice from wherever you can.”

Sage, whose chief executive is Guy Berruyer, is worth around £6bn. Earlier this month there were reports that it might be facing a takeover attempt from SAP or private equity.

A beauty parade has yet to begin, but the banks will present their case to the company shortly.