Wasserstein Bulks Up On B-to-B, Deal Signals Thriving M&A Market

In another step toward dismantling the once-formidable Primedia empire, the company Monday announced the sale of its business information unit to Wasserstein & Co. subsidiary PBI Media Holdings Inc. for $385 million.

Last year the unit--dubbed Primedia Business Information and including such titles as Wireless Review, Trusts & Estates, and The Corn and Soybean Digest, as well as Web sites and a special events department--pulled in $224.8 million in revenue of Primedia's $1.1 billion total.

The move comes following Primedia's February sale of its About.com Web site network to The New York Times Co. for $410 million, and its 2003 sale to Wasserstein of New York magazine.

The market for business-to-business mergers and acquisitions activity has been an active one in recent times, with Jupitermedia Corp. having sold the ClickZ.com Network to Incisive Media for $43 million just this month. Also this month, an investment group led by J.P. Morgan Partners and including Wasserstein & Co., purchased the business-to-business media arm of Veronis Suhler Stevenson, Hanley Wood.



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