B2B Payments

MYOB’s Reckon Buyout Earns ACCC Review

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) will probe small business (SMB) accounting company MYOB’s acquisition of Reckon, according to CRN reports Monday (Jan. 15).

MYOB announced news last November it plans to acquire half of Reckon, which provides management software for accountants, in a deal worth about $137 million. At the time, Reckon Chief Executive Clive Rabie said selling its accounting practice software unit was akin to losing the “jewel in the crown” of the company.

But the takeover isn’t final yet, with ACCC regulators looking into the deal to assess any impact it may have on competition in the accounting industry. According to reports, the ACCC began accepting comment late last week to assess views on how the acquisition might impact the accounting software space, especially as it pertains to the mid-market and large enterprise client base.

Reports said the ACCC expects to publish its findings on March 1.

CRN also reported that the deal previously earned criticism from MYOB’s top rival Xero.

“Acquirers generally promise R&D will continue and that nothing will change,” said Xero Australia Managing Director Trent Innes in a LinkedIn post soon after the takeover was announced last November. “Unfortunately, in most cases, that’s not the reality. Instead, they generally ‘sweat the assets’ or force customers to migrate to another product in their stable.”

Reports said MYOB shares declined slightly following news of the acquisition.

Last year, MYOB reached a deal to acquire Paycorp for $37 million, part of the software firm’s overall strategy to expand its offering to corporate customers, particularly in the enterprise payments space.

“We are pleased to announce this deal with Paycorp, which brings significant growth opportunity for us in the payment services industry,” said MYOB CEO Tim Reed at the time. “We know from our clients that cash flow is consistently the number one pain point for small business operators, and we are delighted that we can bring together a solution that enables our clients to reduce administration time and costs and improve cash flow through the automation of payment services for their businesses.”


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