CTN MEDIA GROUP IN TALKS TO SELL MARKETPLACE MEDIA

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Marketplace Media, the multicultural, college and military media buying arm of CTN Media Group, is in negotiations to be acquired by the San Francisco-based private equity firm Friedman Fleischer & Lowe, according to executives involved in the negotiations.

Marketplace, which specializes in print and radio placement, has approximately 100 employees in offices in San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Calif., New York and Detroit. It claims billings of $50 million, and its client list includes 20th Century Fox, Anheuser-Busch Cos., Apple Computer, AT&T, American Airlines, McDonald's, Chrysler, Coca-Cola Co., Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Corp., among others.

According to an executive close to the deal, Friedman hopes to acquire Marketplace from CTN, "improve it," and then resell. Marketplace was founded in Santa Barbara 13 years ago by Colleen Gordon and Kevin West. It was sold to CTN, a public company in 1999. Greg Anthony, senior vice president, director of national sales at Marketplace, would not comment on the pending acquisition. -- Richard Linnett

Copyright March 2001, Crain Communications Inc.

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