Brave Bison quits Mission Group takeover efforts

  • Brave Bison’s most recent deal valued each Mission Group share at 35.1p 
  • The firm said Mission rebuffed its efforts to have a ‘constructive dialogue’

Marketing firm Brave Bison has ended its pursuit of rival Mission Group following the rejection of its latest takeover offer.

The London-based business, which runs the Social Chain agency started by Dragons’ Den star Steven Bartlett, made an all-share proposal worth £32.3million for the Aim-listed company in late May after its previous £27million bid was turned down.

Brave Bison’s most recent deal valued each Mission Group share at 35.1 pence, a 55 per cent premium to its share price on 10 May prior to the offer period.

TV personality: Marketing firm Brave Bison runs the Social Chain agency started by Dragons’ Den star Steven Bartlett (pictured)

It said it would use the acquisition to pay a portion of Mission’s £26.8 million of net debt, possibly via a share fundraising.

However, Mission claimed the proposal was ‘opportunistic’, undervalued the firm and its future prospects, and did not entail any ‘new offering or access to new markets’.

Brave Bison claimed that Mission rebuffed its efforts to have a ‘constructive dialogue’, and refused to give access to due diligence information or senior management.

The company also noted that Mission did not extend the ‘put up or shut up’ deadline beyond 9 June, by which time it had to make a concrete offer or walk away.

Brave Bison said it was ‘disappointed by the lack of engagement from the Mission board, whose strategy to deleverage the business it does not believe will ‘deliver value for Mission shareholders in excess of the revised proposal’.

‘Brave Bison is a disciplined acquirer and is not willing to advance the possible offer without due diligence or access to key management. As such, Brave Bison confirms that it does not intend to make an offer for Mission.’

Founded in 2011 by serial technology entrepreneur Charlie Muirhead, Brave Bison provides digital advertising and technology services to brand advertisers.

The firm’s clients have included the Professional Golfers’ Association Tour, Holland & Barrett, Google, Shell, and Paramount Pictures.

Much of its growth has come through takeovers, which have included media agency Social Chain, bought in February for at least £7.7million.

Social Chain collaborates with brands such as Amazon, Coca-Cola, Kentucky Fried Chicken, the BBC and Apple Beats to make social media advertising campaigns.

In its latest annual results, the company’s revenue rose by 13 per cent to £35.7million, while adjusted pre-tax profits increased by 38 per cent to £3.6million.

Brave Bison Group shares were flat at 2.45p on Monday morning and have risen by around 13 per cent since the year started.