POS VENDOR RETALIX ACQUIRES OMI

RA'ANANA, Israel -- In one of the first acquisitions of a warehouse application vendor by a point-of-sale application vendor, Retalix here announced last week that it acquired Dallas-based OMI International for $18.6 million.The purchase price was divided between $13.6 million in cash and $5 million in 226,040 restricted shares of Retalix, whose U.S. operation is also in Dallas. The transaction was

RA'ANANA, Israel -- In one of the first acquisitions of a warehouse application vendor by a point-of-sale application vendor, Retalix here announced last week that it acquired Dallas-based OMI International for $18.6 million.

The purchase price was divided between $13.6 million in cash and $5 million in 226,040 restricted shares of Retalix, whose U.S. operation is also in Dallas. The transaction was completed Jan. 2.

The acquisition brings together Retalix, a POS vendor with a growing roster of major supermarket chains (including Publix, Albertsons, Hy-Vee and Hannaford Bros.) as well as independent food stores through its StoreNext subsidiary (operated with Fujitsu Transaction Systems), and OMI, whose distribution software is used by 58 of the top 100 retail food companies and more than 40% of the wholesale grocery business.

Retalix also offers back-office and enterprise applications. OMI is noted for warehouse management and procurement systems.

Retailers could benefit from the merger because the two companies "can work together to optimize ordering from the store level and support a wider variety of merchandise," said Greg Buzek, president, IHL Consulting Group, Franklin, Tenn.

While it's not unusual for two such companies to come together, Buzek said the fact that the POS company did the acquiring, rather than the supply chain company, runs counter to recent trends. "Most mergers, such as Island Pacific and SVI, and Retek and Chelsea, started from the supply chain players looking to extend their software to the store automation area."

In a joint announcement to its current retail clients last week, Retalix and OMI said that "there will be no appreciable change in your working relationship with Retalix or OMI. As new and future product development occurs, your existing products will be secure and enhanced to keep pace with business process and technology changes."