Johannesburg, South Africa (June 27, 2003) -- Sage Group plc, the England-based parent of Best Software, has joined a bidding war for Softline Ltd., the South African parent of the developers of business software applications BusinessVision, AccountMate and Datafaction.

Softline's Web site reports that Sage sent its board a letter expressing interest in acquiring Softline for 1.8 South African Rand per share, which compares to a 1.45 Rand per share offer proposed two weeks earlier by minority Softline shareholder Ivan Ferrer and Exact Software, the Dutch-based parent of Exact North America, the software vendor formerly known as Macola. Softline is also the subject of a 1.30 Rand per share bid by some internal managers.

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