Think New Ideas files for IPO

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Two months after receiving a $5 million cash infusion from Omnicom Group, interactive company Think New Ideas filed for an initial public offering last week.

Formed by merging seven small marketing and technology companies in June, Think hopes to tap into an IPO market that in the past year has rewarded CKS Group, Eagle River Interactive and Leap Partnership with about $40 million in capital each for their forays into Internet advertising and communications.


Though larger than Eagle River and Leap, Think has less ambitious IPO goals. It seeks to raise a maximum of about $15 million.

Think has been operating only for several months, though some of its units, including On Ramp, a well-known interactive production company, have been running for up to three years.

Think said in its prospectus it wants to offer 3 million shares at $5 per share. The low share price would classify it as a penny stock, carrying less prestige in the market than stocks like CKS or Leap.

Commonwealth Associates, a small New York underwriter, is handling the offering.

Think reported a net loss of $1.9 million for the fiscal year ended June 30 on revenue of $12.1 million. It partly attributed the loss to $1 million in non-recurring merger expenses. The year before, Think's then-separate units had a combined net loss of $71,000 on revenue of $10.3 million.

For its $5 million investment, Omnicom received a 22% stake in Think; the offering would dilute its ownership to 15%.

Barry Wagner, Omnicom general counsel-secretary, now sits on Think's board. Think said it and Omnicom have been jointly marketing services since June.

New York-based Think has 98 employees, including CEO Scott Mednick, 40; President-Chief Operating Officer Ronald Bloom, 44; and Chief Technology Officer Adam Curry, 31. Mr. Curry, a former MTV VJ, is an On Ramp founder.

Think's five largest clients, representing 38% of revenue, are Pioneer Electronics, Sega of America, Toshiba of America, Reebok International and Source Informatics.


The company calls its core strengths brand marketing and positioning, Internet and intranet content development, desktop-driven database management, and software design. Noting the company's reliance on project work, the prospectus lists the ``need to develop recurring revenue'' as a priority.

Think joins other tech-oriented companies moving toward public ownership this fall. Publisher Wired Ventures is once again seeking to raise more than $50 million in an IPO after postponing plans earlier this fall. Bozell, Jacobs, Kenyon & Eckhardt agency Poppe Tyson has filed for an IPO, while a filing from True North Communications' TN Technologies is expected by yearend.

Copyright October 1996 Crain Communications Inc.

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