EANS-News: USU to acquire leading provider of social media management solutions

Geschrieben am 20-12-2012

Corporate news transmitted by euro adhoc. The issuer/originator is solely
responsible for the content of this announcement.

Mergers - Acquisitions - Takeovers

Möglingen/Berlin, December 20, 2012. (euro adhoc) - USU Software AG
("USU") has today announced a majority takeover of B.I.G._Social
Media_GmbH ("B.I.G."). The company, based in Berlin, is a leading
international provider of software-as-a-service solutions for
enterprise clients in the field of social media management. B.I.G.'s
solution portfolio extends from intelligent social media monitoring
to applications for social media customer dialog. This means that the
knowledge available on the Internet about customers, markets and
trends can be analyzed on a needs-driven, constantly updated basis
and then processed and utilized across all communications channels
without media disruption. Big companies such as Audi, Bosch,
Microsoft, Deutsche Post/DHL, Lufthansa, O2 and Viessmann already
successfully use solutions from B.I.G. With B.I.G.'s products and
expertise, USU is adding the rapidly expanding social media market to
its portfolio for knowledge-based service management.

Strategic expansion in knowledge solutions

By integrating B.I.G. social media technology into the knowledge
database USU KnowledgeCenter, USU will create a worldwide unique
selling proposition in knowledge-based service management, thereby
consolidating its market leadership in the field of knowledge
solutions. By combining the two established product lines, USU will
tap the full wealth of knowledge on the Internet for its customers
moving forward, serving all customer service channels and delivering
the information needed at each point on the service chain. The
web-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) software from B.I.G. is an
ideal fit for the USU Group's SaaS strategy. The strategic merger
also creates the potential to continue growth, including at an
international level.

Growth potential for USU through social media monitoring

Intelligent social media software provides answers to questions such
as: What is being said on the web about the company? Which social
media platforms are discussing issues relevant to the company? Where
is communication taking place? In future, the combination of
intelligent web analysis and a company-wide knowledge database will
analyze key information on a needs-driven basis to provide a complete
picture of customer and market trends. This helps to optimize
products and services and forms a launch pad for new business
strategies. The integration of social media into business processes
is a particular success factor. For example, the integration of
social media into customer relationship management (social CRM)
enables entirely new opportunities for attracting customers and
boosting customer loyalty. According to the market research company
Forrester, the social software market will continue to develop very
rapidly in the coming years with annual growth rates of more than
60%. Forrester estimates the market volume for 2016 at USD 6.4

Key details of the investment

As part of the transaction, USU Software AG will initially acquire
51% of shares in B.I.G. Social Media GmbH. USU is aiming to acquire
B.I.G. outright within two years. For this reason, the parties have
been granted put and call options for the remaining shares. A total
purchase price of up to EUR 10.7 million has been agreed as part of
the transaction. The exact price will depend on various factors,
including in particular B.I.G.'s operating earnings. The company is
forecasting sales growth for fiscal 2012 of over 50% to more than EUR
3 million.

B.I.G. is also anticipating strong, profitable sales growth in the
coming years. "Every company will have to use the information from
social media sources in future if it wants to be successful. By
investing in B.I.G., we have succeeded in becoming the innovation
leader in this key segment. The products are broadly established and
are an ideal fit for the USU Group's portfolio," explained the CEO of
USU Software AG, Bernhard Oberschmidt.

B.I.G. will continue to operate as an independent entity following
its takeover by USU. "Merging with the USU Group is an excellent
growth opportunity for us as USU's huge customer base will open up
new markets for B.I.G. technology. We're looking forward to
continuing our proven service for our customers. At the same time,
our employees will be given long-term prospects in an established and
healthy international company," said Prof. Peter Gentsch, founder and
shareholder of B.I.G. GmbH.

USU Software AG's financing position will remain solid after the
acquisition - with no liabilities to banks and with cash and cash
equivalents of more than EUR 10 million for further organic growth
and expansion through acquisitions.

Further information on the acquisition and the projected figures will
be announced by the Management Board of USU Software AG when it
publishes the company's figures for 2012 in March 2013.

This press release is available athttp://www.usu.de.
Information on B.I.G. can be found at:www.big-social-media.de

USU Software AG

The USU Group is the largest provider in Europe for IT and knowledge
management software. Market leaders from all sectors of the
international economy use USU applications to create transparency,
enhance agility, save costs and reduce their risks. In addition to
USU AG, founded in 1977, USU Software AG - which is listed in the
Prime Standard of the German Stock Exchange (ISIN DE000A0BVU28) -
also includes the subsidiaries Aspera GmbH, LeuTek GmbH, OMEGA
Software GmbH and USU Consulting GmbH. USU's Valuemation® product
line today offers a high-quality portfolio for knowledge-based
service management from a single source that is internationally
recognized by leading market analysts. The modular suite offers
comprehensive support for the ITIL® industry standard. The Group's
range in this segment is completed by the license management solution
SmartTrack from Aspera, the ZIS product family for systems management
from LeuTek and the myCMDB software from OMEGA. USU Consulting offers
high-quality strategy consulting for IT service management. Using
KnowledgeCenter technology, customers can activate the full knowledge
of their organization - whether as a research and navigation system
or integrated as a knowledge portal. Call and service centers use
this to answer more than 25 million individual inquiries per year.
Through customer-specific development and maintenance of complex
applications, USU experts forge user wishes, industry expertise and
technological skill into bespoke individual solutions. Other broadly
established core competences include process and system integration
and the creation of knowledge and employee portals.

Further information can be found at www.usu.de

Further inquiry note:
USU Software AG
Investor Relations
Falk Sorge
D-71696 Möglingen
Tel.: +49 (0) 71 41 - 48 67 351
Fax: +49 (0) 71 41 - 48 67 108
E-Mail: f.sorge@usu-software.de

USU Software AG
Corporate Communications
Dr. Thomas Gerick
Tel.: +49 (0) 71 41 - 48 67 440
Fax: +49 (0) 71 41 - 48 67 909
E-Mail: t.gerick@usu-software.de

end of announcement euro adhoc

company: USU Software AG
D-71696 Möglingen
phone: +49 (0)7141 4867 0
FAX: +49 (0)7141 4867 20
mail: investor@usu-software.de
WWW: http://www.usu-software.de
sector: Software
indexes: CDAX, Prime All Share, Technology All Share
stockmarkets: free trade: Hannover, Berlin, München, Hamburg, Düsseldorf,
regulated dealing: Stuttgart, regulated dealing/prime standard:
language: English


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