Transaction volume in Q1 2011 has increased 10 percent over Q4 2010, with the 595 transactions seen this quarter being the highest total of any quarter in the past 15 months. Aggregate transaction value rose 65 percent, yet it remains lower than the 15 month high of Q3 2010.
Multiples have also risen in Q1 2010. The median EBITDA multiple in the information industry rose 23 percent over Q4 2010, bested only by Q3 2010. Q1 2011 also saw a rise in the median revenue multiple, from 1.4 in Q4 2010 to 1.8, a 28 percent increase. Again, this number lags behind the highs of mid-2010, however the upward movement is promising.
West Australian Newspapers Limited purchase of Seven Media Group was the largest transaction by value in Q1 2011 at $4.14 billion. This transaction alone represented 12 percent of the aggregate transaction value of the quarter.
The Top Ten Notable Transactions represented almost half of the aggregate transaction value of the quarter, with five transactions greater than $1 billion. Even more notable within these ten transactions are the number of traditional media companies making large purchases within the information industry. A newspaper company, a traditional publisher, a media conglomerate heavily invested in traditional media, and radio station owner have all made considerable investments this quarter.
Berkery Noyes’ core segments, Finance Information and Technology, Healthcare, and Education, each separately saw large transactions this quarter in the Information Industry, with the Finance acquisition of Optionsxpress by Charles Schwab the largest among them at just over $1 billion. The purchase of drugstore.com, inc. by Walgreen Co. for $402 million, was the largest Healthcare transaction within the Information Industry and the purchase of SchoolNet, Inc., by Pearson plc for $230 million was the largest Education transaction.