Media Companies Expect Mergers and Acquisitions by Financial Buyers to Increase in 2007 According to AdMedia Partners Survey

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For third consecutive year, majority of senior executives at leading media companies believe there are not enough potential media acquisition targets to meet demand

Prospects for Media Mergers and Acquisitions.

AdMedia Partners (, an investment banking and financial advisory firm that focuses on marketing services, media, and related Internet and interactive businesses, today announced the findings of its 13th annual industry survey, "Prospects for Media Mergers and Acquisitions."

Conducted in December 2006, the survey of over 1,700 senior executives at leading media companies from the U.S. and abroad found that more than 70% of the respondents continue to expect mergers and acquisitions driven by financial buyers to increase over 2006's robust level.

Mark Edmiston, a Managing Director of AdMedia Partners, said, "As may be the case in many industries, respondents to our industry survey believe that in the year ahead financial buyers will continue to dominate the media M&A market. Respondents certainly think strategic buyers will also be active - just over half predict deals driven by strategic buyers will increase over 2006 and only a sliver anticipate a decrease - but private equity firms are expected to remain the strongest force."

However, for the third year in a row, the majority of senior executives surveyed believe there are not enough potential acquisition targets to meet demand in all media sectors, including online. "Even more than a lack of quantity, there is a sense among respondents that there is a lack of quality merchandise available," Edmiston added. In fact, in the online sector, only 37% of respondents believe there are a sufficient number of online media acquisition opportunities. Across all media sectors, there is a less favorable outlook on the number of sufficient opportunities in 2007 than existed in 2006.

Other key findings of the survey include:

  •     Contrary to some analyst expectations, respondents expect the economy to stay the same or do better in 2007.
  •     Respondents overwhelmingly expect moderate to strong merger and acquisition activity in every sector in which they operate, though a closer look by industry and in comparison to 2006, yields significant variations
  •     The vast majority of respondents expect the same lending criteria in 2007 as was seen in 2006.
  •     While strategic players are expected to pay for solid media properties at the same level as they did in 2006, private equity/financial buyers, still awash in cash, may be able to increase their valuations for exceptional media properties in 2007.
  •     Valuation standards in two key sectors have changed drastically, while the multiples of cash flow that respondents expect to pay or be paid in most media sectors changed modestly, if at all.
  •     Nine out of ten respondents believe that buyers and sellers value interactive media properties differently than other media properties.
  •     Respondents' valuation of interactive media properties are still determined by traditional measures, such as EBITDA multiples and revenue multiples, but a large number of respondents use traffic numbers instead of, or in addition to, regular valuation metrics.
  •     Four out of five respondents expect to complete an acquisition or divestiture, and four out of ten expect to contemplate a sale of their company or a divestiture of a subsidiary operation in 2007. Just under a third expect to be involved in a merger or acquisition transaction outside the U.S., down from 42% in 2006.
  •     Nearly three-quarters of respondents believe both buyers and sellers should act now on prospective transactions.

To access a full length copy of "Prospects for Media Mergers and Acquisitions," please visit the AdMedia Partners website:

About AdMedia Partners

Founded in 1990 by former advertising, media, and investment banking executives, the firm focuses on mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, balance sheet restructurings, debt and equity financing, valuations, and strategy consulting. AdMedia has provided transactional services and strategic and financial advice to the world's leading advertising and media companies. The firm's industry knowledge and strong transactional skills provide the best outcomes for both buyers and sellers-the strategic value that AdMedia Partners brings to every assignment.

Notable recent transactions completed by AdMedia Partners include:

  •     Representing Bonnier AB, a leading $2.5 billion international media company, in its acquisition of a major interest in World Publications, a leading producer of special interest magazines, trade shows and interactive media.
  •     Representing Impulse Marketing Group, an online lead generation and affiliate marketing company serving the financial services industry, in its acquisition by an undisclosed private buyer.
  •     Representing What's On, LP, publisher of What's On, The Las Vegas Guide, in its strategic partnership with Kellogg Media Group, LLC, a leading media company serving the travel, leisure and hospitality sector at the local and regional level.
  •     Representing Alexander & Edwards Publishing, Inc., in its acquisition by Hanley-Wood, LLC, a company owned by JPMorgan Partners, LLC.
  •     Representing Ready Made LLC, a multi-platform media brand for the DIY enthusiast, in its acquisition by Meredith Corporation.
  •     Representing The Glover Park Group, a leading independent corporate communications and public affairs firm, in its acquisition by Svoboda, Collins, a private equity fund.
  •     Representing Medical Broadcasting, the largest independent interactive healthcare agency, in its acquisition by Digitas Inc.


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Mark Edmiston
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