Precise Media Group sold by 3i

The Precise Media Group has been sold by venture capitalists 3i to Phoenix Equity Partners and Management in a deal worth £42m.


Precise, a media-monitoring agency, was backed by 3i when it underwent a Buy-In Management Buy-out (BIMBO) in March 2005.

The company, then trading as KBBI, was introduced by 3i to Peter Harkness who joined as chairman, Peter Low as finance director and Charles Hilliard as operations director.

Since then, the company has enjoyed top-line growth of over 20% and more than doubled its profits.

As a result, 3i has enjoyed an internal rate of return of 101% and has seen its investment more than treble.

Peter Harkness said: “3i has been a strong partner over the last 18 months and has been integral to the success achieved so far.

“Precise has the strongest and most experienced executive management team in UK media monitoring and I believe they will continue to develop the Precise group’s dominance of monitoring and evaluation.”

Precise operates under the brand names of Precise Media, EDS Media, EPCA, Clipability and Media Report.

Its clients include major financial institutions, listed and non-listed companies in all sectors of the economy, including over 75% of the FTSE 100, PR consultancies, government and celebrities.

The business was founded in 1996 by Martin Knight and Chris Banner, former managers at the Financial Times.

© Crimson Business Ltd. 2006

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