Morning Movers (QSFT, KR, IGT)
After Quest Software, a designer and developer of system management software, received a $2.15 billion offer from an unnamed strategic buyer, shares moved about 8.5% higher in early market trading.
This offer surpasses the $2 billion bid made by Insight Venture Partners. Quest has said the bidder will acquire about 20% of the company's issued and outstanding shares. Year-to-date, Quest has seen close to a 30% increase in its share price.
Quest Software is currently trading up about 8%.
Kroger traded up about 3% in the premarket after the company announced a $1 billion share repurchase program. Kroger also raised its outlook for 2012, following strong first-quarter results.
The grocery store chain reported first-quarter earnings of $439.4 million, compared to $432.3 million in the same period of last year. Kroger also raised its earnings outlook to $2.33 to $2.40 per diluted share for 2012.
Kroger's chairman and CEO commented, “Kroger's solid first quarter performance demonstrates that our Customer 1st strategy continues to resonate with customers … Our core business is growing, and we are rewarding shareholders through earnings growth, increasing dividends over time and share buybacks.”
Year to date, Kroger is about 13% lower. KR is currently trading up about 3% for the day.
International Game Technology rose about 9.3% higher in early market trading, following an announcement of a $1 billion share buyback plan.
IGT, a company that creates innovative technology for the gaming industry, said it plans to repurchase $400 million of common stock under the buyback agreement with Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS). As part of the agreement, IGT intends to pay Goldman Sachs $400 million on June 19. In exchange IGT will receive about 21 million outstanding shares.
IGT is currently trading up about 9.5% from Wednesday's closing price.
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