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'Flintstones' characters star in pounds 12m CPG float

CINEMA fans of The Flintstones will shortly be able to buy shares in the company that owns the licensing rights to its characters, after 30 per cent of its shares were placed in the market yesterday, writes Heather Connon.

Copyright Promotions Group is being floated by Mosaic Investments, the mini-conglomerate, as part of a restructuring by David Williams, who returned to the group in February three years after leaving it.

At the flotation price of 120p a share, CPG is valued at pounds 12m - pounds 2m more than Mosaic as a whole, underlining Mr Williams's claim that the restructuring will release extra value for shareholders.

He added that public company status would also give CPG a higher profile, which should benefit its business. Its character licensing rights include Tom and Jerry, the Pink Panther and Sonic the Hedgehog.

Mosaic will retain 30 per cent of CPG for at least six months and a further 40 per cent will be held by CPG directors, headed by David Cardwell, chief executive, and Richard Culley, managing director.

Mosaic shareholders are being offered the chance to claw back shares from the placing on the basis of one for every 29 held. Mosaic's shares were unchanged at 30p yesterday.

The disposal will raise pounds 3m for Mosaic, although pounds 1m will be set aside to indemnify Mosaic against its European venture and pounds 750,000 will be lent to CPG. It will also produce a book loss of pounds 1.2m, although that is due to a pounds 2.7m goodwill write-back. Net assets will rise to pounds 9.8m.

It also announced that pre-tax profits for the year to April were pounds 1m, compared with a pounds 14.8m loss after pounds 15.3m exceptional charges last time. CPG contributed pounds 1m to operating profits.

(Photograph omitted)