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March 22, 1988


By CBR Staff Writer

Ambitious micro and minicomputer distributor and services group MBS Plc accompanied healthy 1987 figures with news that it is raising UKP21.5m net by way of a provisional placing of 29.8m new shares at 75 pence a share – against a price in the market of 83 pence ahead of the announcement – but has made a clawback arrangement whereby shareholders may subscribe to the new shares on a two-for-five basis at the placing price. Holders of MBS loan stock may subscribe to the new shares at approximately 31 shares per UKP100 of stock. MBS wants the cash to fund its growth plans following results showing pre-tax profits up 224% on the previous year. The company is looking across the channel with a view to entering the continental micro distribution, communications and services markets, including education and training. Two UK projects are also currently being considered. The company says it has sold some equity investments during the past year – suggesting that it has disposed of its holding in Birmingham, UK-based computer maker Apricot Plc. The past year has seen a big upheaval at the company, with the big Combro acquisition offset by several disposals, which makes the company’s accounts a dog’s breakfast of extraordinary items. The company sold the software business of MBS Alveronic Computers Ltd and its rentals business MBS Technirent. It is now structured into six businesses: MBS now has six operations: MBS Product Sales, Systems, Services, the DDL microcomputer distribution, Microtex Altos distribution business and MBS Commmunications. MBS said that distribution accounted for UKP44m of sales, 32% of the UKP136.1m total; product sales contributed UKP65m, 48%; Services, Systems and Microtex each accounted for about UKP8m, 6%, and the new Communications tossed in about 2%. MBS’s distribution business grew by 63%; product sales including end-user sales and supplies was up 24%; systems and services rose 20% each and the company’s communications arm established last February registered growth of 60%. But the Microtex Altos Unix business grew just UKP500,000 to UKP7.9m.

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