M&C Saatchi float on London market

Advertising agency M&C Saatchi floated on the London stock market today in a move aimed at funding its European expansion drive.

Advertising agency M&C Saatchi floated on the London stock market today in a move aimed at funding its European expansion drive.

Shares were launched on the Alternative Investment Market at 128.5p per share - lower than the 143p to 164p price range previously reported.

Dealing had been due to start earlier in the day but was postponed until midday after what is believed to have been a technical problem.

Shares are currently only available to institutional investors but will go on sale to the wider public when unconditional dealing begins next Wednesday.

M&C Saatchi, which has offices in 11 countries including the UK, United States, Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore, has said it will use the capital raised by the listing to expand in Germany, France, Italy and Spain.

The group said it was also planning to open another office in China and new offices in South Korea, Indonesia, Thailand and India, and to boost its presence in the US.

Maurice Saatchi, his brother Charles, David Kershaw, Bill Muirhead and Jeremy Sinclair set up the business in 1995 after a dispute with shareholders of Saatchi & Saatchi, the advertising firm that the two brothers and Mr Sinclair created in 1970.

M&C Saatchi’s clients include British Airways, Qantas, Scottish & Newcastle, Dixons, Royal Bank of Scotland, Halfords, GlaxoSmithKline and the AA in the UK, as well as Woolworth’s and Optus in Australia.

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