Tempus Group, which owns CIA Medianetwork, has acquired Europe's largest independent marketing agency, the Added Value Group, in a deal that values the company at £35 million and includes an initial payment of £9 million in cash.
Added Value employs over 250 staff and includes Unilever, Shell, Kodak, Coca Cola, Levi's and Egg among its clients. It has offices operating in London, Paris, Hamburg, Cape Town, Sydney, Melbourne and Hong Kong.
The principal shareholders and founders of Added Value, Peter Dart and Mark Sherrington, have both been appointed executive directors of Tempus.
Chris Ingram, chairman of Tempus said: "This is our most exciting development since we floated the Group in 1989. This will be a unique offer in the marketing services industry and offers a clear alternative to the traditional ad agency model."
He added: "This is a true partnership between Tempus and Added Value, as demonstrated by their directors' on-going equity interest in Tempus. By blending Added Value's marketing expertise with our media communications skills we will be able to make a much greater strategic contribution to growing our clients' businesses."
Tempus has acquired the entire issued share capital, and agreed to acquire the unissued share capital over which options have been granted to certain employees of Added Value, for £9.1 million in cash and the allotment of 6,500,000 ordinary shares of 5p each in Tempus.
Added Value reported profit before tax of £2.1m in 1998 and has net assets of £0.5m.