ISBA CONFERENCE: More Group snapped up by Clear Channel

More Group, the UK poster contractor, has been snapped up by the US cross-media owner, Clear Channel, for pounds 446 million. The sale gives More Group access to substantial funds with which to finance overseas expansion.

More Group, the UK poster contractor, has been snapped up by the US

cross-media owner, Clear Channel, for pounds 446 million. The sale gives

More Group access to substantial funds with which to finance overseas

expansion.



Clear Channel, which operates 173 radio stations, 18 TV stations and

55,000 outdoor advertising displays, will gain a substantial foothold

outside the US, where it is most active. The More Group controls 90,000

fixed advertising panels in 22 countries.



Agencies expressed surprise that a UK company had not bought More

Group.



Mike Gorman, media director of Saatchi & Saatchi, said: ’We’ve all been

speculating for some time that More Group would be taken over, but I

would have thought the likes of United News & Media would be first in.

With digital TV coming and all the money that will be spent on outdoor

posters, it would be a smart move to own channels of communication which

can be used for your own services.’



Alan Simmons, chairman of the outdoor specialist, Concord, believes the

takeover will allow More Group to realise its expansion plans more

rapidly.



’More Group will be able to tap into Clear Channel’s funds to reduce its

debt and help make acquisitions in the UK.’



Ian McComas, director of sales and marketing at More Group, said: ’It

certainly gives us more clout in the market. It’s pretty obvious that

Clear Channel has bought us with the intention of expanding.’



No redundancies were expected following the deal, McComas added.



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