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Progressive Buys Datamonitor, MarketLine and Verdict

July 27 2015

UK-based publishing, events and Business Intelligence group Informa has announced the sale of its Datamonitor Financial, Datamonitor Consumer, MarketLine and Verdict businesses to Progressive Digital Media Group for £25.0m in cash.

Simon PyperThe four consumer information divisions form part of Informa's Business Intelligence unit, from which the InsuranceIQ business is also being divested, while Informa's Medical Journals business is being transferred from the BI Division to Academic Publishing and it is 'exploring strategic options' for its European Conference Business within the Knowledge & Networking Division.

Informa will transfer the four consumer info businesses to Verdict Research Limited, whose entire share capital will then be acquired by Progressive, subject to fulfilment of statutory obligations by Informa. The acquisition is expected to complete within 30 days and will be funded from Progressive's existing cash resources and banking facilities.

Progressive says the buy supports its strategy of expanding its premium subscription based services into global markets, and complements its existing Consumer proposition. The four companies had pro forma revenues for the full year 2014 of c.£17.8m, and adjusted earnings of c.£3.0m. Informa will report its Half-Year Results tomorrow, Tuesday 28th, while Progressive announced its own, unaudited results for the 6 months to June 30th today, with revenues up 13.7% to £33.8m and adjusted EBITDA up 12.4% to £6.1m.

It's just over a year since Progressive acquired CurrentAnalysis, a consultancy providing market intelligence to IT and telecoms professionals, for $19.6m in cash.

Progressive CEO Simon Pyper (pictured) says of the move: 'The acquisition of these businesses will broaden Progressive's Consumer offering, providing scale and additional categories in an important industry sector. This acquisition will be our largest to date, yet of all the companies acquired by Progressive, these businesses are the ones we are most familiar with'. He adds: 'Whilst some investment will be required this year and next, the Board is confident that this acquisition will provide a platform for further growth'.

Web site: www.informa.com and www.progressivedigitalmedia.com .

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