UK accountancy software giant Sage has agreed a deal to acquire HR software firm Fairsail.

Newcastle-based Sage will increase its 20 per cent stake to take full control of Reading-based Fairsail for an undisclosed amount in the next four weeks.

In a statement to the Stock Exchange, Sage described Fairsail as “a global cloud HCM and people management system for mid-sized businesses”.

It has worked with Fairsail on a shared product called Sage People, which has been deployed within Sage itself as well as customers including Skyscanner and Trainline.

Reports have estimated the acquisition at around £40 million.

Sage CEO Stephen Kelly, who was a director at Fairsail before taking up his Sage role, said: “We have been unequivocal about giving growing and ambitious businesses a real-time, frictionless way to manage their entire businesses in the cloud, to create an environment of ‘invisible admin’.

“Building on our successful partnership with Fairsail, this acquisition will accelerate our people offering, ensuring our customers can manage people, their most precious asset, with visibility of the rest of their business.

“This integrates everything from talent acquisition to people analytics in one online system – helping businesses in recruiting, engaging and retaining top talent.”

Fairsail was named as one of the fastest growing technology companies in the UK last year, ranking 13th in the Deloitte UK Technology Fast 50.

Its CEO Adam Hale said: “Our ambition is to be the global leader for HCM and people solutions in the mid-market. The combination of Fairsail with Sage turbocharges that goal.

"Sage People provides customers with full visibility of their people, increases HCM productivity and delivers great workforce experiences, improving engagement and enabling people to do their best work.”