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FreeAgent Acquired by RBS in £53m Deal

last modified Mar 28, 2018 01:36 PM
Accounting software specialist FreeAgent has been bought by a subsidiary of Royal Bank of Scotland for £53 million.

Royal Bank of Scotland has bought FreeAgent, an Edinburgh-based software accounting firm, after reaching agreement on a cash offer worth £53 million.

The announcement said RBS BidCo, a wholly-owned indirect subsidiary of RBS, will acquire the entire issued and to-be issued ordinary share capital of FreeAgent.

Under the terms of the acquisition, scheme shareholders will be entitled to receive 120 pence in cash for each FreeAgent share held, valuing the entire issued and to-be issued share capital of FreeAgent at approximately £53m.

FreeAgent is a provider of cloud-based ‘Software-as-a-Service’ accounting software solutions and mobile applications designed specifically for UK micro-businesses - sole traders and companies with fewer than 10 employees and their accountants.

RBS and FreeAgent have an existing commercial partnership, which, following a successful pilot, has seen expanding customer numbers.

The bank offers FreeAgent’s accounting software to its business banking customers and, following a rollout in the fourth quarter of 2017, more than 10,000 customers are signed up to use the FreeAgent solution.

RBS intends to operate FreeAgent as an operationally independent member of the RBS Group, retaining its existing management team and maintaining its current Edinburgh location.

The bank said it “values the entrepreneurial culture of FreeAgent and believes that by providing access to the additional financial resources and infrastructure of RBS and facilitating access to potential new FreeAgent customers, there is an opportunity to accelerate the growth ambitions of FreeAgent".

Ed Molyneux, chief executive of FreeAgent said: “The announcement represents the beginning of a new and exciting chapter for FreeAgent.

“Our vision is ‘making businesses happier and more successful by putting them in control of their finances’ and this moves us closer to that vision.

FreeAgent are members at ideaSpace West.

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