Analyst Insight

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Jonathan Miller, managing director of media investment advisory firm Whitestone Communications, is cool to the notion that b-to-b deals will continue to heat up the M&A markets in 2006. The M&A field "is highly dependent on how good CEOs are feeling about their stock price, and the last few months have injected a level of uncertainty about growth prospects over the next year and a half," he said. "People are starting to pull back."

Miller noted one area that's picking up, as prospective buyers, both financial and strategic, are taking a closer look at newsletter companies.

Miller stressed that, from a business perspective, newsletters have come of age.

"Traditionally, newsletters have been produced by individual executives and journalist types, and they haven't been run in the most efficient manner, ending up subscale," he said.

"Now, there's been a generational shift, and you have younger companies that are bringing a more businesslike approach to newsletters and whose profits are increasing."

Miller cited Eli Research as an example of the new breed of newsletter companies.

-Matthew Schwartz

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