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Benchmark Group PLC (BMK)


Friday 23 May, 2003

Benchmark Group PLC

Result of EGM

Benchmark Group PLC
23 May 2003

For immediate release - 23 May 2003


Benchmark Group PLC announces that at an Extraordinary General Meeting held
today shareholders authorised the Company to implement a buy-back programme for
up to 6,680,000 of its own shares (just under 7 per cent. of issued share
capital) by way of market purchases.  Independent shareholders also approved, on
a poll, the waiver by the Panel on Takeovers and Mergers of any resulting
obligations under the City Code for the Company's two largest shareholders,
Friends Provident plc and GuocoLand Limited, to make a general offer for the
shares not owned by them.

The current and maximum potential shareholdings of Friends Provident and
GuocoLand (and their respective concert parties) if the buy-back programme were
carried out in full but neither Friends Provident nor GuocoLand sold any of
their existing holdings are set out below:

                                                  (1)                       (2)                       (3)

                                 Number of ordinary        Percentage of current       Maximum percentage
                                shares currently held      issued share capital   of issued share capital
                                                                                            assuming full
                                                                                  utilisation of buy-back

                                                                               %                         %
Friends Provident                          33,816,672                     34.70                     37.26
GuocoLand                                  33,657,790                     34.54                     37.08

Any purchases under the buy-back programme would not prejudice the maintenance
of the Company's listing, as a minimum of 25 per cent. of the shares in issue
would remain in public hands.

For further information:

Benchmark Group PLC                                  Tavistock Communications
Nigel Kempner                                        Jeremy Carey/Molly Dover
Tel: 020 7659 0500                                   Tel: 020 7600 2288
                                                     [email protected]

                      This information is provided by RNS
            The company news service from the London Stock Exchange                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

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