EXHIBITION NEWS May 2017 - Page 12

NEWS THE DEALMAKER Steve Monnington of Mayfi eld Media Strategies runs the rule over the latest global exhibition deals I 12 n this column a couple of months ago, I covered the potential sale of Emerald Expositions and the US$2bn (approx Β£1.5bn) price tag that owners Onex had put on the business. At the time, I commented that either a sale to another private equity fi rm or a stock market fl otation (IPO) were the most likely outcomes. It seems that, with $323.7m of revenue, $22.2m of net income, and $63.6m of adjusted net income, none of the potential buyers were willing to meet the valuation. So in a change of approach, Emerald has now fi led with the US Securities and Exchange Commission to raise an estimated $250m in an IPO. Emerald was formed in June 2013 when Onex bought Nielsen Expositions for $950m and renamed it Emerald Expositions. Since then, Emerald has made a lot of acquisitions including George Little Management for $335m, National Pavement Expo, American Craft Retailers Expo and RFID Journal LIVE! They kept up the acquisition pace this month, buying InterDrone, the International Drone Conference and Exposition, the largest commercial unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) trade show and conference in North America. This is an early stage exit for founders BZ Media, who launched the show in 2015. I have previously mentioned the parallels between Emerald and Clarion in terms of private equity buy-in and subsequent frenetic acquisition activity. In Emerald’s case, this has culminated in an attempted sale and an IPO as an alternative. Clarion shouldn’t be far behind, but in their case it is more likely to be a sale by current owner Providence to another private equity fi rm. STAYING IN THE US Northstar Travel Group has acquired TEAMS Conference + Expo, MeetingsQuest and a number of publications for the meetings sector from Schneider Publishing. TEAMS is aimed at sports-event organisers and the destinations and hoteliers who serve them, while Meetings Quest focuses on meeting planners and their suppliers. 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