Investors say media deals are still getting done

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La Quinta, Calif.—A panel of media investors at American Business Media’s 2008 Spring Meeting said last week that deals are still getting done, although the structure of the transactions has changed dramatically as a result of tighter credit markets.

“At the smaller end of market, in the $25 million to $250 million range, there is a surprising amount of deal flow right now,” said Jeffrey Stevenson, managing partner at private equity firm Veronis Suhler Stevenson.

“For smaller deals, there seems to be financing available, although they are more expensive and lower leverage,” he said, pointing to higher interest rates and lower company valuations.

Philip Thompson, general partner at Alta Communications, which invests in media and communications companies, agreed that it’s easier to find financing for smaller deals.

“Anything less than $30 million in debt we can get done pretty easily by getting two or three lenders on board in club deals,” he said. “North of there, the degree of difficulty increases.”

Michael Hannon, managing director of CCMP Capital Advisors, a private equity firm, said, “You can still get money for good companies.” However, he added, “The deals that are going to get done are going to get done at lower multiples.”

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