By Supantha Mukherjee and Nadia Damouni
(Reuters) - Quest Software Inc said a strategic bidder has proposed buying the maker of enterprise management software for about $2.32 billion, trumping an earlier offer of nearly $2.17 billion from private investment firm Insight Venture Partners.
Quest's shares Monday were trading at $27.65 premarket, above the new offer of $27.50.
The company said its board of directors has determined the new proposal is superior to prior offers.
Last week, Quest agreed to sell itself to Insight for $25.75 per share, after the private investment firm and new partner Vector Capital raised their bid.
The Insight-Vector cash offer of $25.75 a share had topped a $25.50 bid made by a "strategic bidder" that Reuters later identified as Dell Inc.
It is unclear if the new offer is from Dell, but the terms, - not including the price - of the agreement are similar to the original proposal from the mystery bidder, including no financing conditions and paying the bidder a break-up fee of 3.5 percent.
Insight would have the right to match rival offers, or adjust its own bid. The venture capital investment firm has three days to respond on the offer, according to terms in the merger agreement.
(Editing by Maureen Bavdek)