Globecomm stock rises on possible sale

Globecomm Systems Inc., which employs about 240 people

Globecomm Systems Inc., which employs about 240 people on Long Island, has been pressured by shareholders to sell itself to boost stock value, which has fallen about 14 percent in the last year. (Credit: Handout)

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Shares of Globecomm Systems Inc., a Hauppauge company that manufactures satellite communication devices, rose more than 5 percent Tuesday after the company said it plans to explore "strategic alternatives," a phrase indicating the company is considering a sale.

Globecomm made its statement late Monday after reducing its financial outlook for the fiscal year.

Globecomm has hired investment bank Needham & Co. as an adviser.

In a news release, Globecomm said there is "no assurance" that there will be a transaction or change in its business model as a result of the strategic review. The company did not return a request for comment Tuesday.

An acquisition of Globecomm would further the decline in the number of public companies headquartered on Long Island. Publicly traded companies based in the region have fallen from more than 80 a decade ago to about 54 at the end of 2011.

Also on Monday, a report said Verint Systems Inc., of Melville, was in talks to be acquired by an Israeli company; Verint didn't comment on the report.

Globecomm, which has a stock market value of about $285 million and employs about 240 people on Long Island, has been under pressure from shareholders to be sold to boost its stock value. In the last year the company's stock has fallen about 14 percent, compared to a gain of 14 percent for the Standard & Poor's 500 index.

Two weeks ago, JMB Capital Partners, an investment fund based in California, increased its ownership in the company from 6 percent to 6.4 percent. In a regulatory filing reporting the increased stake, the fund encouraged Globecomm to explore a sale.

Discovery Group, a Chicago investment firm that owns 5.9 percent of the company, sent a letter to Globecomm in October criticizing some members of the board of directors, saying "nonexecutive directors of Globecomm have an inconsequential direct investment in company stock while enjoying significant director fees."

In May 2011 Globecomm hired JPMorgan to advise it on a possible sale, though no deal was reached. News reports at the time said Harris Corp., a Melbourne, Fla.-based communications company, was a potential buyer.

Globecomm stock closed Tuesday at $12.21, up 60 cents.

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