Allen & McGarvey, a financial public relations firm in Irvine, has been acquired by one of its major clients, General Automation Inc. of Anaheim.
The public relations firm will become a wholly owned subsidiary of the Anaheim computer maker in a six-figure stock trade that is expected to close by the end of January. Financial details of the transaction were not released.
Joseph Allen, president and major shareholder of Allen & McGarvey, said his four-person firm will become General Automation's in-house public relations and advertising department. The agency, which may retain the Allen & McGarvey name, also plans to spend about 25% of its time working for other clients, Allen said.
Allen & McGarvey was founded in June of 1982. Robert McGarvey, a former partner, left the firm about 18 months ago. The agency had annual billings of about $700,000, according to Allen. He will become General Automation's vice president of corporate affairs, with the other personnel from Allen & McGarvey joining the computer maker as managers.
"We've worked for (General Automation) for five years," Allen said. "The offer was such that it seemed like the right thing to do."
In November General Automation reported its first quarter of operating profit in five years.