"Both strategic and financial buyers are specifically looking for products that provide greater decision-making insight," said Richard Weinstein, managing director of media investment bank Berkery Noyes & Co. "But they're not looking for bits of data and information alone-they want a complete solution."
For this reason, media companies have grown much more interested in acquiring software developers and manufacturers to help them manage their information businesses, including editorial content.
"Major organizations such as LexisNexis and McGraw-Hill have a great need for tools to leverage their content and have made acquisitions to do so," Weinstein said.
Software acquisitions also can create new revenue streams through external software sales and consulting.
In addition to content management, analytics properties are in high demand, Weinstein said.
"Unfortunately there are very few companies that are truly good at analytics and very many companies that want to purchase them," he said. "The same goes for the market for Internet search companies."