Banking and healthware software specialist Misys yesterday confirmed that it is to open its books after receiving approaches for all or parts of the business from a number of parties.
A committee of independent directors "has concluded that it is in the best interests of shareholders to allow certain parties access to specific non-public information in order to carry out due diligence," Misys said in a statement.
Following the announcement, Misys shares rose nearly four per cent at 246 pence, valuing the business at £1.36 billion.
On June 9, Misys, based in Evesham, first announced it had received a request from members of senior management about making a possible offer for the company.
Media reports since have said that interested parties include private equity companies, rivals to Misys and former management.
Misys shares closed at 182.5 pence on June 8.
Yesterday they closed 6.75 up at 243.5.
Misys, which is due to report detailed full-year results tomorrow, reported a ten per cent rise in annual like-for-like sales on June 21 when it said it saw attractive growth opportunities in its core markets.
Investec Securities analyst Gareth Evans said in a broker note he still saw 250 pence as the maximum potential bid level.
"Unless the business itself surprises on the upside at the time of results on Thursday, which is difficult given that the trading statement has already been made, we stick with our previous views, and retain our 'hold' stance," he said.
ABN Amro also retained its 'hold' recommendation, noting the group seems increasingly likely to be taken private, and the return of former directors with an option on two per cent of the capital looks less likely now.
Credit Suisse reiterated its 'underperform' rating on the group, saying that a management buy-out is the least likely option.
In March, Misys ended talks to sell its financial support services arm Sesame and restructured its business as it struggled with flat profits. It is selling non-core activities to focus on key areas.
Meanwhile, kitchen equipment group Enodis - which has an operation at Halesowen - said it had agreed to open its books to a US bidder - as long as it sticks by a pledge to pay at least £892 million.
The London-based firm, which supplies fryers and grills to restaurants including Burger King and McDonald's, rejected a £850 million proposal from Manitowoc last month, saying it undervalued Enodis and its prospects.
But it has now agreed to grant the food services equipment company due diligence after it responded to the rejection by upping its offer from 210p a share to 220p, equivalent to £892 million.
Enodis said access was conditional on a subsequent takeover offer being not less than the 220p a share proposed.
Enodis rejected a 195p-a-share offer from US foods and drinks equipment maker Middleby Corporation in May.
Manitowoc's foods service division, based in Wisconsin, specialises in manufacturing refrigerators and ice-making equipment.
In May, Enodis posted a 71 per cent rise in interim pre-tax profits to £24.4 million and said it remained confident of "another year of good progress".
The company has manufacturing facilities in North America, the UK, Western Europe, Asia and Canada. The company's other UK sites are at Aldershot and Sheffield.
Enodis shares closed 2p up at 217.