CA Approved to Close Platinum Deal

Nearly two months after first announced, Computer Associates International Inc. now has the blessing of the United States Justice Department to purchase of PLATINUM Technology International Inc., a deal worth a reported $3.5 billion dollars.

As part of the acquisition, Computer Associates (Islandia, N.Y.) has agreed to sell six PLATINUM products and related assets, according to published reports. Without the "divestiture" of the PLATINUM mainframe systems management software products, the government reportedly said, Computer Associates' dominance in a number of already concentrated software markets would have been "significantly increased."

"It is important that the companies and universities that use mainframe software receive the full benefits of competition in these markets in terms of price, service and product development," said Assistant Attorney General Joel I. Klein.

The Justice Department had filed suit in U.S. district Court to block the proposed deal between Computer Associates and PLATINUM, and at the same time filed a proposed settlement which, if approved by the court, would resolve that lawsuit. The agreement calls for a trustee to sell to a buyer approved by the department six PLATINUM products and related assets in these markets: tape management, job scheduling and rerun, and change management software for the IBM OS/390 operating system; job scheduling and rerun and automated operations for the VSE operating system.

Computer Associates' original offer to buy the Oakbrook Terrace, Ill.-based PLATINUM was worth more than three times PLATINUM's market value, based on its stock price of $9.87 per share at the time.

--L. Greenemeier