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Informa Acquires Virgo Publishing

Purchase gives U.K. company entrance into U.S. market.

Michael Rondon By Michael Rondon

London-based events producer and academic publisher Informa plc has agreed to acquire Virgo Publishing, pending regulatory approval.

Terms weren't disclosed.

Buying Virgo—a B2B media company with nine websites, six magazines and six events, headquartered in Arizona—gives Informa its first foothold in the lucrative U.S. events market and offers "attractive synergies" with its own shows in the health and nutrition sector, the company says in a release. Informa doesn't touch on how Virgo's publishing assets could be impacted, but John Siefert, Virgo's CEO, says they'll review operations moving forward. No personnel changes are planned, he adds.

"The publishing, media and marketing services of Virgo will continue to be a key part of the portfolio, and we will be analyzing how some of the unique programming—like our Business Value Toolbox, Immersion Centers, Digital Summits and more—can be aligned with the brands behind Informa Group," Siefert says.

"Today's announcement of the purchase of a U.S. exhibition business complements our existing position in the health and nutrition market sector through Vitafoods, creating a strong, global brand proposition in this attractive vertical," Informa says. "It also provides us with an established base on which to build our presence in the important U.S. Exhibitions Sector. The strong performance of our global exhibitions business in the first half further confirms the growth potential of this market."

See also: The Changing B2B Media Model—A Q&A with Virgo CEO, John Siefert 

Informa's Vitafoods Europe event drew 13,873 attendees and more than 750 exhibitors to Geneva, Switzerland for its 2014 show, while Virgo's largest show in the health and nutrition sector, SupplySide West, hosted about 12,000 attendees and 1,700 exhibitors in 2013.

Virgo was previously owned by private equity firm, Arlington Capital, which purchased the publisher for an estimated $100 million in 2008.


Michael Rondon By Michael Rondon

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