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Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Photo by Bloomberg.

These Enterprise Software Firms Are Top Targets for Private Equity Takeovers

Photo: Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Photo by Bloomberg.

Big deals are on the way.

The sharp drop in tech stocks over the past six months, making companies cheaper to buy, is likely to trigger an increase in merger activity, bankers say. Lots of companies in different parts of tech could be targets—Sam Bankman-Fried’s purchase of a 7.6% stake in Robinhood raises the prospect that the stock trading firm could be acquired, while Instacart’s confidential IPO filing this week puts the grocery-delivery firm on the list as well.

But enterprise software firms such as Zendesk or Box may present the most compelling targets. Their combination of steadily recurring revenue and sticky customer bases make them appealing and are in contrast to more-volatile consumer tech companies, which typically rely on advertising for revenue. The most likely buyers? Private equity firms, which have plenty of cash and face fewer regulatory constraints than big tech firms.

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