SBJ/March 6 - 12, 2000/No Topic Name

Omnicom buys more of Millsport

Advertising conglomerate Omnicom Group Inc. increased its stake in the sports marketing agency Millsport LLC to 60 percent last week, up from the 25 percent stake it already owned.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Day-to-day operations at Millsport will not be affected, but Omnicom will provide financial resources to fund expansion and acquisitions, said Millsport chairman and founder Jim Millman.

Michael Birkin, president of Omnicom's Diversified Agency Services group, will join Millsport's board of directors.

"We're getting access to both the investment capital and the intellectual capital," Millman said.

Omnicom, with $5.13 billion in revenue last year, ranks as the largest advertising holding company in the world, ahead of No. 2 Interpublic Group of Cos. Its footing in the sports world is small but growing after acquiring Dallas-based The Marketing Arm in 1999. It also owns Milwaukee-based GMR Marketing, a promotions agency with many sports clients.

Millsport, which celebrated its 25th anniversary in February, ranks as one of the largest sports-specific consulting agencies.

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