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Lo-Q puts down mobile marker with £13.7 mln US purchase

Queue specialist to buy US firm accesso as theme park sector moves towards mobile based solutions for payment, ticketing, queue-line management, privilege and content.

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Lo-Q (LON:LOQ) has made a major strategic move with the acquisition of accesso, one the US’s leading ticketing and e-commerce groups.

The virtual queuing specialist will pay £13.7mln for accesso, which supplies ticketing solutions for theme parks, water parks, zoos and cultural attractions across North America.

Lo-Q already supplies virtual queuing systems to many of the major US theme parks and water parks.

The acquisition will strengthen these relationships, it said, as well as boosting its mobile technology expertise and access to new markets. The deal will also be immediately earnings accretive, it added.

Accesso’s founder and chief executive Steve Brown will join the Lo-Q board to become chief operating officer of the merged North American business.

Tom Burnet, Lo-Q’s chief executive, said: “Both parties believe that this combination presents an excellent opportunity to build a trusted, proven and energetic supplier of scale across multiple Leisure markets. accesso's customer base complements our own and our products and technologies will be hugely synergistic.”

Accesso’s supplies ticketing systems to more than 100 leading venues in the US, Canada and Mexico with nearly $1 billion of transactions expected to be processed in 2012 including more than 14 million print-at-home and mobile admission tickets.

Lo-Q said that both companies believe the theme park sector is moving towards mobile based solutions for payment, ticketing, queue-line management and privilege and content.

By combining accesso's existing mobile product with Lo-Q's smartphone-based solution, Lo-Q said it will be better able to exploit this trend.

Accesso's mobile content and secure commerce platform will total more than 1.1 million downloads this year, it added.

In 2011, accesso generated unaudited revenues of $5.65mln (£3.52mln), underlying earning (EBITDA) of $842,000 (£525,000) and net assets of $1.1mln (£0.7mln). During 2012 accesso has seen revenue growth of approximately 40%.

The consideration will consist of £4mln cash, the issue of 1.8mln shares to Steve Brown and a £4mln loan note.

Quick facts: Accesso Technology Group PLC

Price: 342 GBX

LSE:ACSO
Market: LSE
Market Cap: £94.54 m
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