April 25 (Reuters) - Hyland Software Inc, a U.S. business software company owned by buyout firm Thoma Bravo LLC, is nearing a deal to acquire the software division of printer maker Lexmark International Inc for nearly $1.5 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.
The deal would bring Lexmark's owners, China's Apex Technology Co Ltd and PAG Asia Capital, closer to their goal of shedding non-core units to expand the company's imaging business in Asia. They acquired Lexmark for $3.6 billion last November.
Hyland Software has outbid private equity firms in an auction for Lexmark's enterprise software group, known as Kofax, and may reach a deal as early as next week, the sources said this week. Negotiations could still end unsuccessfully, they added.
The sources requested anonymity because the negotiations are confidential. Thoma Bravo and Hyland Software declined to comment, while Lexmark did not respond to a request for comment.
Enterprise software businesses, which have a steady stream of subscription revenue, have become a favorite of private equity firms in recent years. Thoma Bravo also invested recently in cybersecurity company McAfee.
Hyland's OnBase software helps businesses store and manage content and documents and competes with Lexmark's products, according to Forrester Research.
Based in Lexington, Kentucky, Lexmark acquired Kofax, which had been a publicly listed company, in 2015 for $1 billion. (Reporting by Liana B. Baker in San Francisco and Greg Roumeliotis in New York; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)