The Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc. ("Interpublic")and True North Communications Inc. ("True North") announced that they have reached a definitive agreement under which Interpublic will acquire True North in a stock-for-stock pooling of interests transaction, valuing True North at $2.1 billion.
Interpublic will exchange 1.14 shares for each outstanding share of True North. True North has approximately 51 million shares outstanding.
The transaction will unite the resources of two of the leading diversified advertising and marketing communications firms to create the world's largest marketing communications organization serving the largest base of global accounts, including 40 accounts served in more than 20 countries. Combined pro forma revenue in 2000 of $7.2 billion generated pro forma operating profit of more than $1 billion.
The addition of True North will expand Interpublic's leadership position in many of its core business sectors, including advertising, media services, healthcare, public relations, event and promotional marketing, direct and relationship marketing, branding, and digital communications services. The larger base of agencies will provide the clients of both organizations with access to a greater range of high-quality marketing communications services, thus accelerating under one roof the growth opportunities for both groups of companies.
Interpublic's acquisition of True North is expected to be accretive to earnings per share in 2001 and 2002, after including near-term synergies. Annualized cost savings in excess of $25 million have been identified. Interpublic expects to realize additional top-line business synergies, including cross-selling opportunities that will further enhance the value of the combination.
Commenting on the transaction, John Dooner, Chairman and CEO of Interpublic said: "Interpublic and True North create an industry-leading combination of advertising and marketing services capabilities to offer our clients on a global basis. By joining our companies, we have advanced our ability to address client-led trends towards globalization and integrated marketing communications.
"True North shares Interpublic's commitment to clients and our focus on providing total communications solutions to build the demand side of their business and realize the optimal value of their brands. When people ask me 'Why True North?' It's simple: Great clients, great people and a shared vision for the future."
David Bell, True North Chairman and CEO, said: "We said that we were open to strategic possibilities that benefited our clients, our brands and our shareholders. In joining Interpublic, we believe that all three will benefit from becoming part of a top-tier marketing communications company whose size and resources provide new opportunities for each." Added Bell, "Our management and Interpublic's management agree totally on a vision for the future, and we believe that our culture of collaboration will be a great fit within the culture of Interpublic." SOURCE The Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc.