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KPC Buy Takes it to Market

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With an expected infusion of capital from its acquisition of a publicly traded company, Kupper Parker Communications plans further expansion in U.S. and overseas markets, its chief executive said.

St. Louis-based KPC last week completed its takeover of Greenstone/Roberts Advertising, which provides the company not just a foothold in Long Island but an avenue to the stock market, KPC's president and CEO Bruce Kupper said.

KPC had been looking for a "shell company" under which to go public for some time, Kupper said. Greenstone/Roberts is a bulletin board stock traded over the counter, having been delisted by Nasdaq some time ago, Kupper said.

Kupper said he hopes to get back on the Nasdaq board within a year. The money raised as a result of the deal will be used for another acquisition in London, where KPC in January picked up The Communications in Business Group Ltd., and on Long Island, Kupper said.

From its St. Louis base, KPC in recent years has purchased regional shops in Nashville and Memphis, Tenn.; Louisville, Ky.; Kansas City, Mo.; and New Orleans. The growth has all been done thus far with private capital. "We have been funded out of my back pocket for 20-some years," Kupper said.

Under terms of the deal completed last week, KPC will absorb Greenstone/Roberts Melville, N.Y., operation, which will continue to be run by Ronald Greenstone, who will be director and chief executive officer of KPC Long Island, and Gary Roberts, director and president of the New York operation.

The $2.2 million deal was done with $1.4 million in cash with the remainder covered by KPC assets. Greenstone/Roberts stock symbol, GRRI, will be changed to reflect the new entity. Greenstone/Roberts brings to KPC the experience of being a publicly traded company, completing quarterly reports and other Securities and Exchange Commission requirements. The company also saves KPC the cost of doing its own public offering.

With the acquisition, KPC claims revenues of about $21 million, of which $6 million comes from its overseas business, Kupper said.