(From left) publishing director Stephen Neal, chief executive Tony Selvey, sales and marketing director Roger Horton, and finance director Tony Foye of Taylor & Francis, which yesterday announced that its flotation had been about 10 times oversubscribed. Mr Selvey said the scientific and technical publishing group was prepared to spend up to pounds 100m on acquisitions. "We are looking at half a dozen targets," he said. "The flotation allows us to pursue them with more vigour."

The company celebrates its 200th anniversary this year. The flotation values Taylor & Francis at pounds 129.3m, compared with earlier estimates of about pounds 100m.

The families of several academics who invested in the business when it turned itself into a private company in the 1930s have been made multi- millionaires by the flotation. Most shareholders are holding on to the majority of their shares, however. The placing raised pounds 13.7m, net of expenses, for the company.

Investment Column, this page

Photograph: Neville Elder