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New York-based private equity investment firm Thoma Bravo LLC agreed to acquire Qlik Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: QLIK), a leader in visual analytics and data visualization, in an all-cash deal valued at $3 billion

Pennsylvania-based visual analytics market firm Qlik Technologies Inc (NASDAQ: QLIK) is exploring strategic alternatives, including a sale, Reuters reported. Shares were up over 9% in early trading after the weekend. The move comes after activist investor hedge fund Elliott Management Corp unveiled an 8.8 percent stake in Qlik earlier this month and said the company should be taken over by a larger technology rival. Qlik is working with investment bank Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) to explore its potential sale, says Reuters. Qlik, previously known as QlikTech, was founded in Lund, Sweden in 1993 by Björn Berg and Steffan Gestrelius. The company is headquartered in Radnor, Pennsylvania. In 2003, Qlik raised $12.5 million in venture capital from Accel Partners and Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP). Alex Ott of Accel and Erel Margalit of JVP (currently a Member of the Israeli Parliament, the Knesset) devised a growth strategy that resulted in a 35% annual growth rate and $13 million in revenue by 2004. In 2005, the single-user desktop tool was replaced with a server-based web tool. Qlik established partnerships with Intel and HP, and incorporated charts and colors in their UI. Qlik customers include DB Schenker, Dendrite, Ericsson, and the Swedish Post. In 2007, Lars Björk became Qlik’s CEO. In 2013, the company opened an office in Western Australia. Qlik, with a market capitalization of about $2.43 billion, went public in 2010. It focuses on creating applications that help businesses analyze and visualize data to help them save money. It competes with a product from SAP SE (ADR)(NYSE: SAP) called Business Objects and Cognos, IBM Corp’s (NYSE: IBM) business intelligence software. Qlik delivers intuitive platform solutions for self-service data visualization, guided analytics applications, embedded analytics and reporting to approximately 35,000 customers worldwide. Companies of all sizes, across all industries and geographies, use Qlik solutions to visualize and explore information, generate insight and make better decisions. Analysts have said technology companies such as OracleCorp (NYSE: ORCL) and IBM could be potential buyers for Qlik. If Qlik is sold off, it would be the latest in a long list of enterprise technology companies in recent years that have ended up been taken over after Elliott targeted them. Elliott has pushed for the sale of several companies that have ended up being acquired by private equity firms, such as Compuware Corp, Riverbed Technology Inc, Blue Coat Systems, and Informatica, added Reuters reporter Liana B. Baker. Qlik Technologies provides user-driven business intelligence solutions that enable customers to make business decisions. The company develops, commercializes, and implements software products and related services. It offers QlikView, which enables business users to explore data; ask and answer their own stream of questions; and follow their own path to insight on their own, or collaborate across teams and organizations. The company also provides license, maintenance, and professional services. It serves customers in various industry verticals, such as consumer packaged goods, financial services, pharmaceuticals, retail, manufacturing, technology, and healthcare. The company sells its products through its direct sales force, as well as through indirect channel partners, including distribution partners, value-added resellers, system integrators, and original equipment manufacturers to license and support its software platform. Qlik markets its products in the Americas, Europe, the Asia-Pacific regions, the Middle East, and Africa. The company has approximately 2,500 employees. (Additional reporting from Reuters)]]>