Oracle to buy Melbourne company founded over squash game for $1.6b

US software giant Oracle has made a $1.56 billion offer to buy a Melbourne construction management software business founded by two school friends over a game of squash.

ASX-listed Aconex said on Monday its directors had unanimously recommended the $7.80-a-share offer, which represents a 47.4 per cent premium to Friday’s closing price of $5.29.

Leigh Jasper and Rob Phillpot founded the business,  which digitally connects owners, builders and other teams to manage data, documents and costs across all stages of a construction project, in 2000.

Mr Jasper ,who is Aconex’s chief executive, will stay on under the terms of the deal.

From weekly games to start-up

Mr Jasper grew up in Warrnambool and Mr Phillpot in Rutherglen and the high school friends regularly caught up over weekly squash games.

These games often included discussions about how the internet could improve organisations’ management and storage of large amounts of information.

At the time, Mr Jasper was a management consultant at McKinsey and Mr Phillpot was a project manager at Multiplex Constructions. Read more

Cara Waters – Brisbane Times – 18 Dec 2017