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    SAP buying rival

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    German business software group has agreed to buy its smaller French rival, , for more than $6.8 billion. The company hopes to complete the deal early next year.

    Business Objects made sales of 885 million euros last year, while that of SAP totalled 3.1 billion euros.

    “Together, SAP and Business Objects intend to offer high-value solutions for process and business-oriented professionals. Business Objects’ customers will continue to benefit from open, broad and integrated business intelligence solutions,” both firms said in a joint statement.

    Analysts say that the purchase has marked a change of for SAP, which has previously concentrated on organic growth.