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Ringier, Krueger Sign Merger Agreement

March 20, 1989

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) _ The W.A. Krueger Co. printing firm has agreed to be acquired by Ringier AG of Zurich, Switzerland for $321 million, company officials said.

The two companies have been partners since 1985 in a joint venture, Krueger Ringier Inc., the nation’s largest printer of paperback books. Krueger Ringier also prints National Geographic and other magazines and catalogs.

Krueger chairman Jack W. Fowler said Monday that the agreement on a cash price of $10.50 per share is subject to stockholder approval. Ringier, which owns about 5 percent of Krueger, can void the acquisition if it fails to receive enough shares to give it 80 percent ownership, Krueger spokesman Cliff O. Bickell said.

The price was the same as Ringier offered in January. That takeover stalled after Krueger officials said other buyers were interested in the company.

Krueger Ringier had revenues of $237 million in 1988 and profits of about $15 million, while Krueger had $372 million in revenues and $15.7 million in profits in the same period.

Krueger employs about 3,400 people in offices in Scottsdale and production plants in Phoenix; Jonesboro, Ark.; New Berlin and Brookfield, Wis.; Senatobia, Miss.; Olathe, Kan.; Fullerton, Calif.; and Pontiac, Ill., Bickell said.

Ringier, a family-owned company with 3,000 employees in Europe, Hong Kong and the United States, publishes the European editions of USA Today, Fortune magazine and the Journal of Commerce, among other publications. Its revenues exceeded $500 million in 1988, according to a statement by chairman Christoph Ringier. The company did not disclose its profits.

″We will create a global printing company that is not only committed to the American marketplace but also able to offer international publishers a single printing and distribution source,″ he said.

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