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Blue Focus buys stake in UK PR firm

Updated: 2013-12-19 21:33

Blue Focus, one of China's biggest marketing services companies, has taken a 82.8-percent stake in London-based public relations agency We Are Social, a move that signals its aggressive expansion globally.

Blue Focus will make an initial payment of 186 million yuan ($30 million) with additional performance-based payments to be made over a three-year period, according to the company's statement filed to the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.

"This overseas investment will help our customers to meet their international needs and the expected market demand. It will at the same time promote our company's brand and overall competitiveness," the statement said.

Through a series of domestic acquisitions, the listed company has expanded from public relations into a range of marketing services, including media buying and digital advertising. It is now setting its sights on international expansion.

With a market capitalization of $3.7 billion, Blue Focus plans to increase its revenue tenfold over the next decade. A deal with a global company will help the company achieve that goal, experts said.

We Are Social has eight subsidiaries in international cities, including New York, Paris, Milan, Singapore and Sydney, with key clients ranging from sportswear giant Adidas, Heineken and luxury automaker Jaguar.