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Ahead of the Bell: BroadSoft

NEW YORK (AP) -- A Raymond James analyst on Tuesday upgraded BroadSoft Inc. to "Market Perform" from "Underperform," on speculation that the communications software supplier could be Oracle Corp.'s next acquisition target.

Tavis McCourt said that Oracle's Monday announcement of its plans to acquire Tekelec, another communications supplier, marks Oracle's second in recent months. In February, the company announced plans to acquire Acme Packet Inc., which makes equipment for telecommunications companies, for about $2.1 billion.

McCourt said that based on those two acquisitions, it appears that Oracle is trying to build a portfolio of voice over IP infrastructure assets and is focused on expanding its software capabilities.

The analyst said the addition of BroadSoft could help fill out Oracle's vision for itself, but wouldn't provide as much value as the other two acquisitions. But he also noted that Oracle President Mark Hurd has been known to pay premium prices when he wants to acquire a company. BroadSoft's market capitalization was about $750 million as of Monday's close.

BroadSoft shares rose 50 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $27.39 in premarket trading Tuesday.