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Baycorp Advantage shares recover


Monday 18th November 2002

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Shares in Baycorp Advantage continued their recovery today as predators were reported to be circling the Australasian credit information company.

The stock rose 12 cents to $2.23 today and it has now lifted 34 percent off the trough it sank to last week following its profit warning.

The Australian Financial Review said today that Atlanta-based Equifax Inc, the largest US credit reporting agency, was said to be running the ruler over Baycorp following the dramatic loss of over half of its value.

The Australian business weekly noted that Baycorp's market capitalisation was now less that that of either Baycorp or Data Advantage's capitalisation before they merged last year.

The paper noted that rival consumer credit operator, Dun & Bradstreet Australasia, whose more aggressive presence in Australia had been responsible some of Baycorp's share price slide earlier this year, was "struggling for credibility.

Baycorp's outgoing chairwoman Rosanne Meo at a briefing on Friday said Dun and Bradstreet's push into the market had not amounted to much.

Another rival, Collection House, has acknowledged it was some way from entering the market, AFR said.

Listed Equifax is said to be backing Collection House's start-up in Australia but may find it cheaper and more effective to simply buy Baycorp.

Chicago-based TransUnion International, which owns 2.3 percent of Baycorp and sits, might also be considering a friendly merger, AFR said.

Eric Watson's listed RMG, once seen as a rival to Baycorp, is no longer a serious contender if its share price is anything to go by. It traded today at 4.4 cents, down from a year high of 28 cents.

Ms Meo said the share price fall was out of kilter to the profit warning the company issued last Monday.

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