The Sage Group has acquired approximately 51 percent of Elit Group, a French provider of business management software for the transport and food distribution industries.

Sage will pay approximately $20 million in cash for the shares, and under French regulations, will make an offer to the remaining Elit shareholders to acquire all of the company's outstanding shares.

Elit provides software to more than 3,000 midsized clients. Elit's revenues for the fiscal year ending in June 2005 were approximately $34 million, with operating losses of about $900,000.

"The acquisition of a controlling interest in Elit represents a further extension of our range of industry-specific business management software," said Sage chief executive Paul Walker, in a statement.

The purchase of Elit strengthens Sage's position as the market leader in accounting software in France after its November 2005 acquisition of Adonix for almost $150 million. Adonix provides enterprise resource planning for midsized firms, and had about 7,000 customers and 750 employees at the time of the acquisition.

Previously on WebCPA:

Major Sage Resellers Merge (July 25, 2006)

SAP Acquires Praxis, Will Fold CRM into Business One (June 11, 2006)

Sage's Norwegian Deal Dashed (April 20, 2006)

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