Media M&A Activity Expected to Increase in 2014
Financial buyers getting back in the game.
M&A activity is expected to ramp up in 2014 after a mild 2013, according to a recent survey by AdMedia Partners.
Sent to more than 7,000 execs in media, advertising and marketing, 80 percent of potential strategic buyers think the market for acquisitions will improve. Financial buyers arenâ€™t quite as bullishâ€”49 percent feel M&A activity would increase; 41 percent say itâ€™ll stay flatâ€”but few think things will slow down.
Dating back to last year, strategic buyers continued to make their presence felt more than financials in 2013, with more than half of respondents saying theyâ€™d been approached by an industry buyerâ€”in line with the 2012 survey results. Nearly 40 percent say a financial buyer inquired about an acquisition though, up from just a quarter of respondents in the prior year.
Areas of interest included analytics, social and mobile marketing and custom content. Surprisingly, ad tech and ad networks were toward the bottom of the list, throwing water on the buzzy sectors.
Growth rates are expected to be moderate and on target with previous years. The median expectations for revenue growth and ad spend increasesâ€”13 percent and 3 percent, respectivelyâ€”remain unchanged since 2011.
The gains in popular areas like video and custom content have begun to slow (or, perhaps, mature), with the majority of respondents forecasting spending growth below 20 percent.