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Technology / AI and automation


The deal whereby internet services and systems integrator USWeb Inc bought the larger CKS Group, a marketing communications firm, closed yesterday after shareholders for both companies gave their approval. When the deal was announced in early September it was valued at $344m, but since then the CKS share price has increased so much that it is now worth $540m. The company will be known as USWeb/CKS for now, after its first choice, Reinvent Communications was the subject of a suit from Inventa Corp. USWeb’s CEO Robert Shaw leads the new company with Mark Kvamme, chairman and CEO of CKS, as the new chairman. Joe Firmage, co- founder and chairman of USWeb becomes the new company’s chief strategist. There will be merger costs of about $34m spread between this quarter and next, and the company will take a charge in the current quarter of about $11m for the write-off of an impaired CKS asset obtained through a previous acquisition.

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