Friday , November 15, 2019

Mitek Rejects ASG’s ‘Underwhelming’ Buyout Offer

Mitek Systems Inc. reported early Monday that its board of directors “unanimously rejects” last week’s unsolicited buyout offer from business software firm ASG Technologies Inc., saying it “is not in the best interests of Mitek’s shareholders.”

Today’s announcement is no surprise. Chairman Bruce Hansen on Thursday signaled that he and his colleagues on the board of San Diego-based Mitek, a provider of software for mobile remote deposit capture as well as identity-verification applications, were skeptical of the offer that values Mitek at $425 million.

“The board believes that ASG’s proposal substantially undervalues the company and its prospects for continued growth and value creation, and that the company’s current strategy will deliver meaningfully more value to Mitek’s shareholders than ASG’s proposal,” Mitek’s response says.

Just what’s next is unclear. A spokesperson for New York City-based Elliott Management Corp., the hedge fund that owns ASG, declined to comment on Mitek’s stance. A spokesperson for Naples, Fla.-based ASG did not respond to a Digital Transactions News request for comment.

Mitek’s response goes on to call the $10-per-share offer an “underwhelming proposal” with no financing commitments that came after the “short-term market disruption” caused by Mitek’s August announcement that long-time chief executive Jim DeBello and chief financial officer Jeff Davison would be leaving the company. Mitek also called the offer an “unsuccessful attempt to distract from its record performance” in its recently ended fiscal 2018.

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