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January 4, 1988

FLETCHER DENNYS INTO UNIX WITH CIRCULAS BUY

By CBR Staff Writer

Fletcher Dennys Systems Plc has made its first purchase since being rescued by a consortium led by Hillsdown Holdings Plc’s Hillsdown Investment Trust in September (CI No 758). The West London personal computer dealer is paying UKP244,250 in shares for Unix communications and desktop publishing software house Circulas Ltd. Circulas has warranted net pre-tax profits of UKP80,000 and net assets of UKP84,250 for the year to November 1988. The purchase price will be reduced by the amount of any shortfall in net assets and by twice the amount of any shortfall in profits to that date. Fletcher Dennys ran into trouble soon after going public last year (CI No 475) when anticipated local authority orders failed to materialise (CI No 678). At the time of the rescue, Hillsdown said it wanted to make Fletcher Dennys the basis of its activities in the computer industry. Hillsdown owns 35% and the other members of the rescuing consortium, including Gartmore Special Situations Trust and clients of Parrish Investment Management Ltd, hold another 35% of the equity. It is still not clear what Hillsdown plans for its 14% stake in typewriter distributor Office and Electronic Machines Plc which is moving into the personal computer-based market.

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