UBM plc is buying Advanstar Communications Inc., known for producing fashion trade shows, for $972 million.
Advanstar provides marketing services to the fashion, licensing, life sciences and power sports industries. The company produces events, including the Magic Marketplace, an apparel trade show for fashion buyers and brands, and Coterie, a well-known women's fashion trade show. The company produces 54 trade shows, 100 conferences, and also owns 30 publications, 200 electronic products and web sites, plus direct marketing products and services.
The company was sold by an investor group that includes Anchorage Capital Group LLC, Veronis Suhler Stevenson and funds management by the tradable credit group at Ares Management LP (NYSE: ARES).
UBS, headquartered in London, owns the Game Developers Conference, a professional-only game industry event, and CphI, a conference for pharmaceutical ingredients. The company also owns communications businesses PRNewswire.
The deal gives the combined company more scale across the globe, and allows UBM entry into the fashion market, where it does not currently produce any events.
Goldman Sachs & Co. and Moelis & Co. acted as Advanstar's financial adviser, and Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP and Slaughter and May provided legal advice. J.P. Morgan Cazenove was UBM's financial adviser, while Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP was legal counsel.
In January, Emerald Expositions also made a trade show acquisition, picking up George Little Management LLC for $335 million.