United Business Media Acquires Commonwealth for $152M
Commonwealth has an established portfolio of integrated media products and proprietary business information databases. Commonwealth provides business intelligence, including proprietary data, news and analytical content, to the international trade and transportation industry. It’s headquartered in East Windsor, New Jersey and employs about 400 people.
In the year ended September 2005, more than 60 percent of Commonwealth’s revenues came from data and on-line products, with 88 percent of revenues being earned in the United States. In the same period, Commonwealth had revenues of $55.6 million and EBITDA of $12 million, up from the previous year by 6 percent and 14 percent, respectively. Commonwealth’s products include on-line data services PIERS Global Intelligence Solutions and BACK Aviation Solutions, The Journal of Commerce and its related print and online titles and directories covering international trade, rail and trucking markets. The company also publishes magazines and custom directories serving the U.S. seaport market. Its events, including the Breakbulk Conference and Exhibition, contributed 4 percent of revenues in the year to September 2005. UBM intends to support Commonwealth’s existing growth plan and accelerate its development in markets outside the United States.
Commonwealth will be integrated into UBM as a new division with Commonwealth CEO Alan Glass continuing in his role and joining UBM’s senior executive team, reporting directly to UBM CEO David Levin.
UBM is acquiring Commonwealth from its current owners, RFE Investment Partners, Bariston Partners, the Economist Group, ABRY Partners and Commonwealth’s management. The transaction is subject to anti-trust regulatory clearance and is expected to be completed in the next four weeks.