Vertis, American Color to merge

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Printing and marketing services company Vertis Communications and American Color Graphics, one of the largest printing and pre-media companies in North America, have signed a letter of intent to merge operations.

The two privately held companies have complementary service offerings and clients. As a result of the transaction, the new Vertis will have a significantly larger footprint, enabling the combined companies to better address the advertising insert and pre-media services marketplace.

ACG had revenues of $445 million in 2007. On a pro forma basis, the combined entities would have had revenues of $1,896 million for the 12 months ended March 31.

The merger will integrate ACG's eight production facilities, with capabilities in commercial offset and flexographic printing, as well as six pre-media service centers into Vertis. The new company is expected to realize significant synergies as the operations are restructured to increase operational efficiencies and improve service offerings across the platform and product lines.

The combined company will be led by Mike DuBose, chairman and CEO of Vertis of Baltimore. Steve Dyott, ACG's current CEO, is expected to remain with the combined company to help with the transition and integration of the two companies. At the close of the deal, ACG will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Vertis.

Vertis and ACG, Brentwood, TN, expect to sign a definitive merger agreement by August 13.

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