Australia's John Singleton to launch new agency

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SYDNEY -- John Singleton Advertising Ltd, Australia's only agency listed on the stock exchange, is planning to launch a second fully-owned agency brand in Australia and also to acquire a direct marketing company after selling its 5% stake in Network Ten national telecaster for $48m, Russell Tate, managing director of the group has announced.

"We're billing close to $120m and, inevitably, as we continue to grow we will find account conflict problems," says Tate. "It's already happening." He said former Mojo General Manager Mike Aronsten would head the new operation which will open early in 1997.

Tate says he and Chairman John Singleton have held several meetings overseas with potential international partners about possible joint ventures or equity stakes but are "still a long way from being clear about the best direction to take".

The agency, he says, will declare a special $1.45 a share dividend following the sale of the Ten shares, with Mr Singleton, who holds 7.5 million of the company's 21 million shares, standing to take about $11m.

Copyright December 1996, Crain Communications Inc.

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