Media M&A Leads to $40B in Deals
By Mickey Alam Khan
The housing market slowdown and weakened business spending didn’t curb third-quarter media and information merger and acquisition activity, according to a new report from investment bank Jordan, Edmiston Group Inc.
Eleven industry sectors tracked showed that acquirers closed 493 transactions in the period, up 24 percent from the year-ago period. The deals represented a total value exceeding $40 billion.
And Jordan, Edmiston said media and information M&A activity for the year is set to surpass 2005, when 508 transactions were completed.
That said, overall deal value is flat year over year because fewer huge deals were closed in the directory and online media sectors. Last year’s highlight was the $1.8 billion sale of search engine Ask Jeeves to IAC, owner of Expedia, Ticketmaster and Match.com.
Jordan, Edmiston, New York, estimated the online media and marketing and interactive services sectors registered the completion of 131 and 116 transactions, respectively, for the first three quarters of this year. These sectors accounted for half of all the media and information deal activity.
A recent example of the M&A activity in online companies was the purchase this month by database firm infoUSA Inc., Omaha, of Digital Connexxions, a Canadian e-mail marketing services provider.
Other transactions closed this year include NBC Universal’s acquisition of iVillage, Viacom-owned MTV Networks’ purchase of Atom Entertainment and Reader’s Digest’s snatch-up of AllRecipes.com.
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