Marketing agency gives nod to pounds 22m takeover

Colleagues Group, the direct marketing agency, yesterday announced that it had agreed to be taken over by Moore Corporation, a Canadian company that specialises in business communications, for pounds 21.6m in cash.

Moore's takeover terms are 95p cash plus a 5p special dividend. The total 100p-a-share offer is in effect a premium of 23 per cent to the company's closing share-price of 77.5p on Tuesday, and 48 per cent more than the close on 3 March, the day before Colleagues said it was in takeover talks. Colleagues' shares yesterday closed at 93.5p, up 16p.

Moore said: "Whilst Moore has concentrated its direct marketing activities on printed customer communications, campaign management services which will add strength to its research, creative and data-based management capabilities as part of a total direct customer communication solution."

The deal comes after a poor year in 1996 for Colleagues' when a big client cut spending, and a postal strike caused problems.