Vista Equity Partners to buy Marketo for $1.79 bln: Reuters

Marketo Inc (MKTO.O), a maker of cloud-based marketing software, said on Tuesday it agreed to be bought by private equity firm Vista Equity Partners, in a cash deal valued at about $1.79 billion.

Vista Equity will pay $35.25 per share for Marketo, representing a 9.5 percent premium to the company’s closing price on Friday.

Earlier in May, Bloomberg had reported that the company was working with Morgan Stanley to explore strategic alternatives including a potential sale.

Shares of Marketo, which have risen 12.2 percent this year, were halted before the bell.

The company’s shares have been rising after JMP Securities said in a research note that the company had given presentations to SAP SE (SAPG.DE) and Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) about a potential sale.

Morgan Stanley is Marketo’s financial adviser for the Vista deal and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati is its legal adviser.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP is Vista’s legal counsel.

Marketo headquarters will remain in San Mateo, California, after the deal closes in the third quarter of 2016.

Photo of Robert Smith, CEO of Vista Equity Partners. Courtesy of Reuters.