Just days after AdvancedAdvT launched a formal hostile takeover battle for London’s M&C Saatchi Group, the latter has received an offer from a rival suitor, Next Fifteen Communications. Saatchi shares shot up 30% in Friday trading on the London Stock Exchange on the news.
After rejecting the Advanced offer, Saatchi’s independent board directors and executive committee have recommended that shareholders approve the Next Fifteen offer which values the agency at about $386 million, or about $50 million more than the Advanced offer.
Next Fifteen said the proposed deal would “bring together highly complementary strengths and strategies,” including geographic presences that would make the combined firm a strong player in the US, UK, Asia and Australia.
The company also said its in-house data and analytics offering “could be immediately leveraged across the enlarged groups to create significant new client opportunities.”
The deal is far from sealed as Advanced could sweeten its offer. Both suitors will be busy over the coming days and weeks wooing Saatchi shareholders. Next Fifteen said it expects to issue the formal paperwork for its offer to shareholders in June. If enough shareholders accept the offer an agreement could be completed in the second half of the year.
The offer comes two months after Next Fifteen agreed to acquire the UK marketing firm Engine Group for about $100 million.