Salient Federal Solutions to buy ATS Corp.

Salient Federal Solutions, the Fairfax-based contracting company founded by Brad Antle, said Tuesday it plans to buy ATS Corp, the McLean firm chaired by Edward H. Bersoff.

Salient is acquiring ATS for $3.20 per share, the companies said in a press release Tuesday.

Antle founded Salient with backing from Frontenac, the same investment firm that backed SI International, a company Antle sold to the North American arm of Serco Group of Britain in 2008. Salient has been growing and previously purchased San Diego-based information technology firm SGIS and Alexandria-based IT firm Command Information.

ATS Corp. has had its share of recent difficulties. Bersoff stepped down as chief executive at the end of 2010, and Sidney E. Fuchs, named the new chief executive, quickly left after ATS announced it would pursue strategic alternatives, including a potential sale.

ATS announced Tuesday that its 2011 revenue dropped 21.7 percent in 2011, to $91 million. Its profit for the year dropped 37.1 percent to $4.46 million (19 cents per share).

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