Perot to acquire Soza

Perot Systems Corp. has announced its intention to acquire a company that will double its presence in the federal market. Perot Systems, based in Plano, Texas, will pay $75 million in cash for Soza and Co. Ltd., which had $137 million in revenue in 2002.

"This is a great acquisition for us that will effectively double the size of our government services group to more than 1,500 associates and will represent more than $200 million of annual revenue," a Perot Systems spokesman said.

Soza provides information technology and management consulting services to public- and private-sector clients.

Among its federal customers are the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the departments of Agriculture, Defense, Transportation, and Health and Human Services.

"Federal IT services is a high-priority market for Perot Systems, and our continued investment in this area demonstrates our commitment to growing this business both organically and through strategic acquisitions," Ross Perot Jr., president and chief executive officer of Perot Systems, said in a statement. Perot's father is H. Ross Perot, the company's chairman and a former presidential candidate.

The acquisition represents a growing trend of companies buying other firms in order to enter or build strength in the federal sector, said consultant Larry Davis, president of Aronson Partners LLC in Rockville, Md., and a specialist in mergers and acquisitions.

"This trend is emerging. If you look at the [historical] data, you see occasional nontraditional players in the mix," he said.

"Now we're starting to see some people who never had any federal business," he added.

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