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Supermart sweep in prospect as AMP buys iii for£52m

AMP has bought personal finance website Interactive International Investor in a deal worth£52m, making its second acquisition in two weeks.

The move follows AMP&#39s takeover of Towry Law for£75.7m, giving it 200 RIs in the UK.

AMP is offering 30p a share, making the deal worth£52.1m in share capital. Shares in iii closed on Monday at 25p, giving it a market capitalisation of£40.9m.

Its shares were at a high of 415p in early 2000. The site took£519,000 of transaction-related revenue in the first quarter of 2001.

AMP&#39s recently launched fund supermarket Ample will be integrated with iii but no decisions have yet been made on how to brand the combined offering.

iii product marketing director John Blowers was earlier recruited to head the Ample service. AMP says it will use iii as part of its multi-channel distribution strategy.

Financial Technology Research Centre director Ian McKenna says: “AMP will have synergies with Towry Law and now buying a major electronic platform, which it will merge with its fund supermarket, could be a very smart strategy for multi-channel distribution.”

AMP global director e-business Joanna Varley says: “iii is a strong strategic fit. This accelerates our plans for Ample. With Towry Law we have the business capability to give the right serv-ice to IFAs.”

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