M&A Scorecard: April 2006
Buyer: Amos Press
Seller: Clapper Publishing
Sale Price: $6 mil. est.
Revenue Multiple: 1X
The deal behind the deal: Five craft magazines will go from one family-owned publisher to another as the 55-year-old Clapper Publishing Company, led by Lyle and Marie Clapper, sells its titles to Sidney, Ohio-based Amos Press. Already enthusiast publishers, Amos Press previously had eight titles in the stamp and coin collecting and muscle car markets. "Expanding our publishing expertise into the crafts market represents a significant opportunity to diversify our enthusiast publishing business," said Bill Fay, VP of operations at Amos Press, in a statement.
The five Clapper titles ranged in circulation from 100,000 to 200,000; four were bimonthly, with Crafts ‘n Things eight times per year. Jeff Clapper, publisher of the Clapper titles, will stay on as publisher of Amos Press’s Crafts Publishing operations. Offices will remain in Des Plaines, Illinois.
Our panel says: "Amos is a strong enthusiast craft publisher and Clapper is still a small business that was ready to partner up with a larger platform."
"That’s the second or third acquisition Amos has made in the past couple of years. They’re making a big push to grow the company."
Buyer: Weider History Group
Sale Price: $15 mil. est.
Revenue Multiple: 1X
The deal behind the deal: Primedia shaved off another division with the sale of its ten history titles to Weider History Group, led by CEO Eric Weider. Among the assets included in the sale are American History, Military History, World War II and Historynet.com.
Weider History Group is a wholly owned subsidiary of Weider Health and Fitness.
Eric Weider, a self-described history buff, already publishes Armchair General.
Our panel says: "[Primedia] is continuing to get rid of anything they can at a fair price."
"That group has changed hands a couple of times over the years. It’s an enthusiast buying an enthusiast group. Probably not considered a high enough growth market for Primedia."
Seller: Lawn Care Success
Sale Price: $1 mil. est.
Revenue Multiple: 1X
The deal behind the deal: Penton makes another strategic Web-centric acquisition with WeldingWeb.com from green industry publisher Lawn Care Success. The site, which has over 7,000 registered members and generates over 220,000 monthly page views, will be incorporated into Penton’s Metalworking Group headed by publisher Bob Rosenbaum.
David Nussbaum, Penton CEO, noted in a statement his attraction to e-media products: "A key part of our growth strategy is to continue to aggressively expand our e-media offerings, through bolt-on acquisitions such as this transaction, internal product development and strategic partnerships."
Our panel says: "My guess is it’s part of Penton’s strategy now to offer a strong Web and e-newsletter presence to compliment each of their markets."
"I don’t think they paid much for it. It must have some lead generation component or high traffic."
Buyer: Future US, Inc.
Sale Price: N/A
Revenue Multiple: N/A
The deal behind the deal: San Francisco-based enthusiast publisher Future US Inc. bought the hard rock consumer title and self-described "world’s loudest rock magazine" Revolver from New York-based Harris Publications, publisher of hip-hop title XXL and an outdoor group that includes Bowhunting.
Revolver has a distribution of 150,000. The title will exist within Future’s music division alongside Guitar World and its various spin-off titles, which Future purchased from Harris in 2003. Offices will be based in New York.
Our panel says: "They’ll have group sales opportunities and maybe some editorial synergies, and they can absorb accounting and production fairly easily."
"They’ve already purchased magazines from Harris in the past. They’re rounding out the group but I’m not sure what the synergies are with that one, it’s not one of the Guitar spin-offs."
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