You Don't Have To Be Ted Turner To Merge

Small companies can also reap substantial benefits from the M&A game

Warren Struhl, a 33-year-old entrepreneur in Secaucus, N.J., had made a big success of his company, which supplies specialty papers and stationery for small businesses to use in desktop publishing. But his success was creating a serious problem. Some of the original investors in his five-year-old company, PaperDirect Inc., wanted to cash out. After some searching, he found an investment bank willing to buy a 20% stake. But then Deluxe Corp., a $1.8 billion Minneapolis concern that prints and processes checks, offered him more than $100 million for the entire company. "It was an offer I couldn't refuse," Struhl says. In August, 1993, he paid off his original investors fiftyfold.

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