M/A/R/C group acquire interest in MSP Associates

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The M/A/R/C Group has acquired a 30% interest in MSP Associates, with options over two years to increase its percentage ownership to 100%.

MSP Associates, which generated approximately $2.0 million in revenues during 1998, is a marketing and sales force consultancy in Amsterdam specializing in the design and implementation of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) programs for business-to-business clients.

The alliance and coordination of Targetbase/MSP Associates strategies will be overseen by Alan Timothy, Managing Director of Targetbase's UK office, but terms of the transaction were not disclosed.  The investment is expected to be neutral to M/A/R/C's earnings in 1999.

The M/A/R/C Group is one of the largest marketing intelligence firms in North America. The Company operates in two core businesses. Its M/A/R/C Research business provides customer and brand marketing research for measuring and building a brand's value. Targetbase is a customer relationship management agency specializing in the delivery of the maximum return on the client's marketing communications investment.

"The value of focused customer relationship management has long been   recognized in the U.S. and is now rapidly growing throughout Europe," commented Sharon Munger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The M/A/R/C Group. 

"Our investment in MSP Associates reflects our commitment to strengthening Targetbase(SM)'s global presence by building our portfolio of superior customer relationship management tools. Targetbase UK's and MSP's range of services are highly complementary and both employ a proprietary analytical approach to help Fortune 500 companies identify key customers, strengthen brand awareness and build a loyal customer base." commented Ms Munger.  "In addition, MSP and Targetbase utilize similar analytic templates that enable clients to achieve an increasingly higher level of ROI on resources allocated towards marketing and sales strategies."

"MSP's proven change management programs help companies implement a customer-oriented strategy and add value to Targetbase's expertise in providing extensive analytics, technology and CRM communications," said Wil Wurtz, Managing Director, MSP Associates. "We believe this alliance will give our clients the most comprehensive solution available in customer relationship management programs."

"The combination of Targetbase's proprietary ARM enterprise technology and MSP's Customer Marketing method, results in a full CRM solution set for our clients in Europe," said Jack Wolf, President of Targetbase.  "Our alliance gives us a more significant presence in mainland Europe, increasing our attractiveness to companies looking for a global CRM provider. We plan to work very closely with MSP to develop new business initiatives and add value to each company's client base moving forward."

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