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DoubleClick Takes Advantage Of Weak Market

DoubleClick Inc. to acquire MessageMedia for $41 million in stock.

2 Min Read

As one of the most virile companies in the struggling interactive marketing arena, DoubleClick Inc. continues to scoop up the small-time players that lack the power to survive the recent advertising fallout.

The company said Friday that it plans to acquire MessageMedia Inc. for $41 million in a stock deal. The agreement adds another 100 million monthly E-mail deliveries to DoubleClick's distribution record for such clients as E-Trade Securities Inc. and Columbia House, bringing the total distribution to 600 million E-mails per month for 240 clients. DoubleClick also gains MessageMedia's M3Platform, a full service E-messaging solution, and UnityMail 4.0 licensed software, which the company says will be integrated into its DARTmail and FloNetwork E-mail systems. MessageMedia also has a strong presence in the European market.

The deal follows the April close of DoubleClick's acquisition of FloNetwork, another E-mail distribution vendor. In May, the company completed its acquisition of intellectual property from Sabela Media, the Australian ad tracking and analysis firm that was owned by DoubleClick's struggling rival, 24/7 Media Inc. The acquisitions mirror the company's dual plans to take the lead in the E-mail messaging arena and establish a stronghold in the international interactive marketing space.

Under the terms of the deal, DoubleClick will issue .04 of a share of its own common stock for each share of MessageMedia common stock. Based on the 10-day average closing price ended May 31, that exchange ratio is 60 cents per share, says DoubleClick. That's a 42% premium over MessageMedia's 10-day average closing stock price, which has been hovering at a 52-week low of 25 cents per share for much of the spring after reaching a high of $7 per share last June. DoubleClick has been in the $10 per share range for most of the spring, with a $57.75 high for the year.

The deal is expected to close in the third quarter, barring any interference from the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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