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UPDATE 1-ACI Worldwide signs agreement with Starboard to add two independent directors

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(Adds background, details on new directors)

Feb 25 (Reuters) - ACI Worldwide Inc said on Thursday it has signed an agreement with hedge fund Starboard Value LP to add two new independent directors to the payments software provider's board.

Starboard, which owns a 7.7% stake in ACI, had urged the company to hire advisers and consider a sale in December, two months after calling it an "attractive" takeover candidate. (https://reut.rs/3aSmdfb)

M&A activity in the payments sector has accelerated over the last few years as companies need scale against the backdrop of increasing complexity and technology requirements for e-commerce.

ACI said on Thursday the new directors would be appointed to in March, temporarily increasing the number of directors on its board to 12. (Reporting by Ayanti Bera in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)