O'Reilly buys New Zealand's biggest outdoor ads firm

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AUCKLAND -- Irish media magnate Tony O'Reilly's Australian Provincial Newspapers is continuing its expansion into outdoor advertising by purchasing New Zealand's largest outdoor advertising company, Look Outdoor, through its 27% owned Australian company, Cody Outdoor.

The purchase will add nearly 600 New Zealand sites to Cody's inventory of 120 Australian positions. APN is due to lift its stake in Cody to 50% next month, with an option to move to 100% in December 1998.

Pierce Cody, managing director of Cody Outdoor, says: "We are looking for other offshore positions, particularly in Asia...but our goal is to clearly assert our dominance in Australia first."

O'Reilly, who says he sees synergies between Ireland and New Zealand, has in the past two years gained control of New Zealand's major newspaper and magazine publishing group Wilson & Horton Ltd and recently purchased a major broadcast network Radio New Zealand, privatized by the Government.

Copyright November 1996, Crain Communications Inc.

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