Media & Marketing transaction volume increased five percent over the past three months, from 371 to 388. Aggregate value fell 56 percent, from $27.1 billion to $12 billion. Of note, the industry’s five largest deals in Q1 2019 accounted for $4.4 billion in value, compared to $10.6 billion in Q4 2018 and $20.2 billion in Q1 2018.
Deal volume in the Internet Media segment rose 13 percent on a quarterly basis. Notable Internet Media transactions in Q1 2019 included Chinese live streaming and social media platform YY’s acquisition of Bigo Technology, a social video streaming app based in Singapore, for $1.5 billion; Viacom’s acquisition of Pluto TV, a free streaming television service, for $340 million; Spark Networks SE’s announced acquisition of Zoosk, an online dating company, for $255 million; and Delivery Hero’s acquisition of restaurant search and discovery service Zomato’s UAE business, for $172 million.
M&A activity in the Marketing segment decreased seven percent over Q4 2018. However, volume gained six percent year-over-year. Public relations firm Finn Partners was a notable Marketing segment acquirer in Q1 2019 with the acquisitions of Moorgate Communications, a London-based communications agency that serves clients in the financial services sector; CatchOn, a Hong Kong-based strategic marketing communications consultancy that focuses on leisure, lifestyle, and travel; and Small Army, an integrated marketing and creative services company located in Boston.
As for other select industry sectors, deal flow in the Broadcasting segment quadrupled, rebounding to its Q3 2018 level. The number of deals in the Consumer Publishing segment improved 23 percent over the past three months, returning to its Q3 2018 level. Meanwhile, transaction activity in the Exhibitions, Conferences, and Events segment remained nearly constant for the second consecutive quarter.