By Dylan Stableford

Media M&A activity increased 13 percent in 2005, led by a “surge” in online and exhibitions/conferences deals, according to a report by the Jordan, Edmiston Group
released yesterday.

Forty-three b-to-b magazine deals totaling $2.4 billion were completed in 2005, a 10 percent increase in number and 42 percent bump in value, according to the report. Consumer magazine transactions in 2005 (34) were off 8 percent from 2004 (37), but their total value;roughly $2.6 billion;increased a whopping 472 percent, by far the largest increase among the media sectors tracked by JEGI.

Overall, exhibitions and conferences (33 deals, up from 23 in 2004) and online media (120, up from 87) showed the biggest increase in activity.

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