M&A Trends in the Online Subscription Publishing Industry: Anne Holland comments on the M&A opportunities for online subscription-based publishers. Some interested buyers who have approached Holland are looking for small-mid-sized firms to buy: Publication with a few hundred B2B subscribers or a few thousand B2C subscribers. Something semi-proven that they can come in and grow substantially with their cash and/or publishing wisdom.
On the other hand, “[t]he publisher-side folks who have approached me about selling are almost always the ones which are bigger. Folks with dozens of employees and a higher burn rate. Often profitable, but maybe just on the edge of it. They’ve worked very hard at growing their service to be as big as possible, thrown some investor money at it, burned the midnight oil, and gotten it to a thin wedge of black. Not the 20% average profit I was used to seeing as normal for a print niche ezine, but not losing money either.”