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July 15, 1987

CASE BUYS 30% STAKE IN OLIVETTI-BACKED TSL COMMUNICATIONS

By CBR Staff Writer

Tuesday’s speculation that a bid was on its way for Case Group Plc (CI No 724) turned out to be wide of the mark: the Watford-based company is predator, not prey. Case yesterday revealed that it has bought a 30% stake in TSL Communications Ltd of Guildford, Surrey. The venture cost Case UKP250,000 and it has agreed to inject a further UKP300,000 into the company. TSL was established in 1983 to design, develop and market data communications and networking products, mainly based on Ethernet. It was previously owned by the Hays Group but in March 1986 Olivetti bought a 40% stake (CI No 399). Hays retained 30% – now sold to Case, and the remaining 30% of shares were held by TSL staff. TSL produces local area network hardware and software, protocol converters and wide area network gateways that can be used separately or combined to form a communications infrastructure. TSL currently supplies Case with its 8300 mini-switch and concentrator, a feeder for Case’s own 8500 Packet Switching Exchange. Case has agreed to subscribe to an upcoming rights issue which will increase its stake to around 35%. TSL is forecast to make a profit of around UKP200,000 this year on turnover of approximately UKP2m. Last year it just broke even on sales of about UKP1m. It claims expertise in integrating mixed vendor equipment – its Advanced Network System, ANS, integrates various workstations, host computers, and host computer users into a single corporate network using a real-time multi-tasking operating system – and to be a leader in the secure systems market.

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