Gage Marketing Group To Buy Promotions Firm With $10 Million In Sales

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Gage Marketing Group LLC, Minneapolis, signed a letter of intent to acquire Mayer-Douglas Inc., a promotion consulting group. The deal, which is expected to close at the end of December, will add $10 million to Gage's annual $70 million in sales.

Mayer-Douglas, also of Minneapolis, specializes in direct-to-consumer promotions like coupons and sweepstakes. The firm beefs up the packaged goods marketing skills at Gage, a diversified marketing agency.

Sources would not disclose terms of the transaction.

The merge of the two firms has been five years coming. Randy Mayer, president and owner of Mayer-Douglas, and E.C. Gage, chairman/CEO of Gage Marketing, are long-time personal acquaintances. To gather capital for the Mayer-Douglas purchase, Gage Marketing sold Gage Marketing Support Services, its executional unit, to AHL Services earlier this year.

"The reason we use the term 'consulting group' to describe ourselves is to emphasize our strength in strategic, tactical and conceptual planning, as differentiated from graphic communications," Mayer said. "Our business is really about behavior change. We design programs to stimulate consumers to behave in a manner that has been predetermined to be beneficial for product volume."

Gage Marketing can now offer its Internet and database capabilities to Mayer-Douglas's client base including ConAgra's Healthy Choice and Banquet brands and Hunt-Wesson's Orville Redenbacher and Swiss Miss brands. The agency's clients' products reach a combined 67 percent of U.S. households, Mayer said.

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