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Thomson Buys Dialog Online Business for $275 Million

Canadian Internet solutions company Thomson Corp. Thursday bought the online information business of Dialog Corp. for $275 million.

Under terms of the agreement, Thomson acquires rights to the technology and software to deliver to customers the products acquired from Dialog and all rights to the Dialogue brand, including related brands such as DataStar and Profound.

Thomson had targeted Dialog's (DIAL) Information Services Division (ISD) in the deal, a unit which boasted 1999 online revenues of $233 million. Dialog provides access to more than six billion pages of information in the fields of business, science, engineering, finance, and law, and counts 20,000 clients in 120 countries.

Dialog will change its name to Bright Station plc and will continue to operate its current Web Solutions Division and eCommerce Division.

Thomson will also make an equity investment of $25 million in Bright Station and plans to evaluate certain of Bright Station's technology and software to determine potential applications across Thomson's business units.

"With almost half its revenues generated outside the U.S. and its long-standing customer relationships, the addition of Dialog's online business will strengthen Thomson's international capabilities and assist us in penetrating new corporate markets," said Richard J. Harrington, president and chief executive officer of Thomson Corp.

Harrington added that Dialog's focused business news, research and healthcare content compliments Thomson's current offerings.

The transaction is expected to close during the second quarter.