- True North Communications has announced that it will not bring legal action in an attempt to halt the merger of Publicis with Publicis Communication.
True North, which has a minority stake in Publicis Communication and owns the FCB and Bozell international networks, has asked the London Court of International Arbitration to value its stake in Publicis and set a figure for damages. The hearing will take place during the week of February 1, 1999.
Bruce Mason, CEO of True North, said: "What a difference a year makes. Last December we were embroiled in a court battle that led to the defeat of Publicis' hostile take-over attempt. Now, 12 months later, we're delighted to see that Publicis has decided this time to honour their contractual obligation to provide True North with an exit from its Publicis investment without our having to take legal action."
He added: "Our May 1997 divorce decree legally bound them to provide liquidity by year end for the stock True North owned in Publicis. The merger of Publicis Communication with Publicis S.A. appears to accomplish this. Hopefully this is the beginning of the last chapter of a very bad book -- the tortured saga of True North and Publicis. This will enable us to finally exit the acrimonious relationship with Publicis."