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May 6, 2010 2:57 PM

Cleary, Kirkland Lead on $1 Billion ABB/Ventyx Merger

Posted by Brian Baxter

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and Kirkland & Ellis took lead legal advisory roles on a deal announced on Wednesday between Swiss power and engineering company ABB and U.S. energy services and software manufacturer Ventyx.

Under terms of the deal, ABB will acquire Atlanta-based Ventyx from private equity firm Vista Equity Partners for more than $1 billion in cash, according to Dow Jones Newswires. The transaction, which will strengthen ABB's existing network-management business, is the company's first large takeover in more than a decade.

Cleary M&A partners Neil Whoriskey and David Leinwand advised Zurich-based ABB on the acquisition along with associates Lindsay Barenz and Robert Manzanares. The firm has represented ABB in the past.

David Breach, the founding partner of the corporate group in Kirkland's San Francisco office, led a team from the firm advising Vista and Ventyx on the sale. Kirkland corporate partners Stuart Casillas and Leah Palmer, tax partner David Kung, and intellectual property partner John Lynn also advised on the deal.

Kirkland previously advised San Francisco-based Vista on its $381.5 million acquisition of Misys Healthcare Systems in 2007, which the private equity firm renamed SunQuest Information Systems. Kirkland also advised Vista, via Ventyx, on the acquisition of the nMarket software business from The Structure Group last year.

Ventyx was formed in March 2007 after Vista acquired service delivery management software firm Indus International for $240 million earlier that year and merged the company with its MDSI Mobile Solutions unit.

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