Business & Real Estate

Sale of Sacramento Kings chairman’s software company approved

Kings majority owner Vivek Ranadive was in India for the NBA as the sale was OK’d.
Kings majority owner Vivek Ranadive was in India for the NBA as the sale was OK’d. Sacramento Bee file

Sacramento Kings Chairman Vivek Ranadive’s software company has gone private.

While Ranadive was in India on a basketball goodwill tour, shareholders overwhelmingly approved the $4.3 billion sale of Tibco Software Inc., his Palo Alto technology company, to a private equity firm. The votes were tallied Wednesday at a special meeting of shareholders at Tibco’s headquarters, and the results were announced Thursday in a brief statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Ranadive, Tibco’s founder, chairman and chief executive, will get a payout of more than $290 million, including the proceeds from the sale of his shares and “golden parachute compensation,” according to an earlier SEC filing.

As announced in September, Tibco is being sold for $24 a share to Vista Equity Partners, capping a difficult stretch in which the company’s profitability waned and shareholders became restless. It’s unclear what future role Ranadive, who founded Tibco in 1997, will play at the company. The deal is expected to be completed Friday, and the company’s stock will no longer be publicly traded.

The Kings and Tibco have forged a partnership since Ranadive led a group that bought the team last year, preventing its proposed relocation to Seattle. Tibco’s software powers the Kings’ new smartphone app, and SEC filings show the company performed about $400,000 worth of work for the team. In return, Tibco gets signage at Sleep Train Arena. Kings officials have said Tibco’s sale will have no impact on the team.

Ranadive’s stewardship of the Kings came under some criticism from investment analysts who follow Tibco. The $1 billion-a-year company’s once-solid revenue growth flattened out in the past two years, and its profits and stock price dipped. Although the troubles started before Ranadive got involved with the Kings, some analysts said they believed Ranadive’s attention to Tibco matters was diverted by his role in Sacramento.

Most investors don’t attend shareholder meetings, casting their votes ahead of time by mail. Ranadive didn’t attend Wednesday’s meeting in Palo Alto. A Kings spokeswoman said he was continuing his tour of his native India with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver.

Tibco is a “big data” company whose software is used by companies such as JPMorgan Chase and FedEx. Delta Air Lines, for example, uses the software to manage the flow of passengers and baggage.

Call The Bee’s Dale Kasler, (916) 321-1066. Follow him on Twitter @dakasler.