NEW YORK — January 10, 2019 — Berkery Noyes, an independent mid-market investment bank, today released its full year 2018 mergers and acquisitions trend report for the Information Industry.
The Information report features companies in the Media & Marketing, Software, and Online & Mobile Industries. It analyzes M&A activity during 2018 and compares it with data covering 2016 and 2017.
According to Berkery Noyes’ latest research, deal volume year-over-year decreased five percent. Total value increased 25 percent, from $302.85 billion to $378.62 billion.
The industry’s median revenue multiple from 2017 to 2018 rose from 2.0x to 2.4x, while the median EBITDA multiple improved from 10.7x to 12.0x. Over the past three years, deals in the $10-$20 million range received a median enterprise value multiple of 1.6x revenue, compared to 3.8x revenue for those in the $160 million and above range.
Regarding the three horizontal markets in the report, volume in the Software horizontal remained about constant relative to 2017. The number of deals in the Business Software segment, which consists of software designed for general business practices and not specific industry markets, increased 17 percent.
Notable Business segment transactions in 2018 included SAP SE’s announced acquisition of Qualtrics, a survey and research software company, for $8 billion; SAP America’s announced acquisition of CallidusCloud, which offers cloud-based sales, marketing, learning, and customer experience solutions, for $2.43 billion; Workday’s announced acquisition of Adaptive Insights, a cloud-based corporate performance management and business intelligence solutions company, for $1.55 billion; and LinkedIn’s acquisition of Glint, a real-time employee engagement platform, with a reported purchase price of over $400 million.
Meanwhile, volume in the Media & Marketing portion of the Information Industry fell 11 percent on a yearly basis. Deal flow within the B2B Publishing and Information segment declined eight percent, which was nearly the same as its 2016 level.
Notable B2B segment transactions included Blackstone Group’s announced acquisition of a 55 percent stake in Thomson Reuters Financial Risk Division for $11 billion; an investment consortium’s announced acquisition of Dun & Bradstreet, a commercial data, analytics, and insights business, for $6.66 billion; IHS Markit’s acquisition of Ipreo Holdings, which offers financial market information and software with a focus on alternative assets, for $1.86 billion; and TransUnion’s acquisition of Callcredit Information Group, a credit bureau headquartered in the U.K., for $1.43 billion.
The Online & Mobile horizontal saw volume increase three percent on a yearly basis. Of note, four of the horizontal’s top ten largest deals in 2018 occurred in the E-Commerce segment. Along these lines were:
- Walmart’s acquisition of a majority stake in Flipkart Online Services, an e-commerce marketplace based in India, for $16 billion;
- Alibaba Group’s announced acquisition of Ele.me, an online delivery and local services platform in China, for $5.42 billion;
- Chinese e-commerce platform Meituan’s announced acquisition of Mobike, a bike sharing company that allows users of its mobile app to reserve and unlock bikes, for $3.4 billion; and
- SilverLake’s announced acquisition of ZPG, the owner of property website Zoopla, for $3.34 billion.
“Demand exists for businesses that can demonstrate growth, profitability and a solid product or service,” said James Berkery, Managing Partner at Berkery Noyes. “Large strategic companies continue to seek growth through acquisition, private equity investors have capital to deploy, and private owners are looking for timely exit strategies.”
A copy of the INFORMATION INDUSTRY M&A REPORT FOR FULL YEAR 2018 is available at the Berkery Noyes website.