Penton Media’s stock has nearly doubled, jumping more than 65 percent from a close of 26 cents on Tuesday to 43 cents as of mid-afternoon on Wednesday. Volume, however, soared to more than 1 million. Over the last three-month period, Penton has averaged daily volume of about 78,000. The spike comes on the heels of Tuesday’s announcement that the company was "seeking strategic alternatives" (Folio: Alert, July 11), including a possible sale of the company. On Thursday, activity leveled off, with the stock price at 47 cents and volume at 147,693 at presstime. Among the b-to-b publishers most hammered during the recession, Penton could see light at the end of the tunnel. The company possesses some of the strongest magazine and trade show brands in publishing, including the Natural Foods East and West shows (two of the fastest growing shows in the U.S.). Penton also appears to have addressed a potential roadblock to a sale, with its preferred shareholders agreeing on a plan to share the proceeds of a sale with common shareholders, who have the ability to block a deal. Based on company financials and projections, a best case scenario under the proceeds-sharing plans terms would see common shareholders receiving $27 million while preferred shareholders;Penton owner ABRY Partners and its allies;get more than $150 million back on the original investment of $50 million in 2002.
ABRY Partners is also said to be exploring a sale for Cygnus Business Media (Folio: Alert, June 28), with Credit Suisse First handling the sale and New York City-based DeSilva & Phillips advising.
Manufacturing and Supply Chain Group Restructured
Meanwhile, Penton has embarked on a strategic internal reorganization effort within its Manufacturing and Supply Chain Group publications. David Blanchard has been named editor-in-chief of Industry Week and David Drickhamer has been named associate publisher and editorial director for the Supply Chain Group publications, which include Logistics Today and Material Handling Management magazines and their accompanying Web sites.