Epiq Systems in renewed discussions to sell itself: Reuters

(Reuters) — Epiq Systems Inc is in new talks to sell itself, as a drop in the value of the U.S. legal software company’s shares has made it attractive to potential buyers, according to people familiar with the matter.

The discussions come as Epiq tries to expand its labor-intensive document discovery operations, while hoping its higher-margin bankruptcy administration business will benefit from the turmoil facing oil and gas exploration and production companies.

Xerox Corp (XRX.N) and privately held legal process outsourcing firm DTI have made offers for Kansas City, Kansas-based Epiq worth between $14 and $16 per share, the people said on Friday.

Other companies are also interested in acquiring the company, which announced in September 2014 it was exploring strategic alternatives, one of the people added. There is no certainty that Epiq will agree to any deal, according to the sources.

“Epiq and its board of directors, including its strategic alternatives committee, has and continues to engage in an active, robust and thorough review of the company’s strategic and financial alternatives for the purpose of maximizing value for all of Epiq’s shareholders,” the company said in a statement.

The sources asked not to be identified because the negotiations are confidential. DTI declined to comment, while Xerox did not respond to a request for comment.

Epiq shares, which have dropped 36 percent over the past 12 months, ended trading at $11.63 on Friday in New York, giving it a market capitalization of about $430 million.

Epiq’s largest shareholder, P2 Capital, made a $20-per-share bid for the company in early 2014 that was rejected by its board.