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Sun, Google enter strategic partnership

In another move designed to take on Microsoft, Google and Sun Microsystems announced an agreement to promote and distribute their software technologies globally. Under the agreement, Sun will include the Google Toolbar as an option in its Java downloads. The two companies have also agreed to find ways to promote and enhance Sun's Java and productivity suite, a product that goes head-to-head with Microsoft Office, the dominant standard.

Oracle agrees to buy Siebel for $3.6 billion

Oracle Corp. has signed an agreement to buy Siebel Systems in a deal valued at $3.6 billion. The acquisition will strengthen Oracle's customer relationship management applications business, adding 3.4 million CRM users and 4,000 applications customers, Oracle said. "In a single step, Oracle becomes the No. 1 CRM applications company in the world," Oracle CEO Larry Ellison said in a news release.

ABM finds trade show revenue up 2.1% in Q2

Trade shows enjoyed a 2.1% increase in revenue in the second quarter compared with the same period in 2004, according to American Business Media's Business Information Network for Trade Show (T-BIN) report. Revenues for the first half were up 3.6% compared with the first half of 2004. Attendance was up 0.6% in the second quarter and 2.4% for the first half.

Wasserstein completes deal for Primedia unit

Wasserstein & Co., along with investment partners Highfields Capital Management and Lexington Partners, announced last week the completion of the purchase of Primedia's Business Information segment for $385 million in cash. Wasserstein acquired the unit through PBI Media Holdings, an entity controlled by Wasserstein through its U.S. Equity Partners II investment partnership. No other financial terms of the purchase were disclosed. PBI Media Holdings will announce its new company name in the near future, according to Wasserstein. In conjunction with the sale, John French was promoted to president-CEO of PBI Media Holdings.

Novell awards account to Philip Johnson

Novell Inc. has selected Philip Johnson Associates as its global advertising agency of record following a review. Philip Johnson will be responsible for all of Novell's global communications, including creative and messaging platform, brand and solution advertising. The agency will handle media planning and buying in North America and will partner with London-based Banner Corp. to manage media in Europe and Asia Pacific. Billings were undisclosed.

dmg world media buys iMedia Communications

dmg world media, which produces ad:tech expositions, announced the acquisition of iMedia Communications. The purchase price was undisclosed. iMedia produces iMedia Agency and Brand Marketer summits and publishes "iMedia Connection" newsletters and iMedia staff will continue to operate out of Los Angeles and Dana Point, Calif.

Media M&A activity up 130% year-to-date

Merger and acquisition activity in the media and information industry totaled $52 billion in the first nine months of 2005, up 130% over the same period last year, according to Jordan, Edmiston Group. The activity is being driven by several factors, including the continuing convergence of off- and online media, the strong drive for growth by strategic companies and low interest rates that are keeping debt markets aggressive, the investment bank found.

America Online acquires Weblogs

America Online announced last week it has signed an agreement to acquire 2-year-old privately held Weblogs, one of the leading blogging companies. AOL said it expects the deal to close this week. Financial terms were not disclosed. Weblogs has a network of 85 blogging sites covering a variety of topics, and more than 100 independent, freelance bloggers. It will become a wholly owned subsidiary of AOL and operate with full editorial control and independence, AOL said.

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