Technological advances have made it easier to turn out passable duplicates of banknotes printed by De La Rue and other security printers. It is harder to replicate the watermarks, metal strips and other devices installed during the paper-making process.
Jeremy Marshall, De La Rue's chief executive, said ownership of Portals would allow printing and security devices to be combined. 'You can only organise that properly if you are in control of both.'
Confirmation of De La Rue's approach saw another 40p rise in Portals' shares to 805p. De La Rue shares slipped from 878p to 857p.
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