After the media market largely dried up last year, 2010 so far is proving to be much more active. According to media industry investment bankers the Jordan, Edmiston Group, 445 transactions were announced through the first six months this year, up 52 percent from 292 the same time last year. Meanwhile, deal volume has jumped 291 percent to $20.79 billion.

Of the 10 market sectors tracked by JEGI, six saw “strong” growth, JEGI says. The number of mobile media and technology sector transactions increased 188 percent to 46, marketing and interactive services deals jumped 96 percent to 131, database and information services transaction grew 90 percent to 38, and the number of b-to-c online media deals increased 64 percent to 125.

The b-to-c online media and technology sector saw the number of deals through the first half this year increased nearly 300 percent (26 transactions with a combined value of $363 million). B-to-c online media and technology also was active with 125 deals so far this year at a combined value of $2.98 billion (compared to 76 deals and $1.24 billion through the first half in 2009).

While b-to-b media deals (23 transactions) were valued at $87 million through the first half (driven by Reed Business Information’s magazine sell-off), the consumer magazines, exhibitions and conferences and newspaper publishing sectors all saw declines in the number of transactions and value. (Click on the chart below.)

JEGI says that while strategic buyers continue to lead M&A activity, private equity buyers are continuing to return to the market and backed the two biggest deals this year: Silver Lake Partners and Warburg Pincus’ $3.2 billion acquisition of financial information provider Interactive Data Corporation, and Madison Dearborn Partners’ $2.5 billion deal for TransUnion, a credit and information management company.