UBM to pursue more acquisitions

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London—As United Business Media's latest acquisition—its $287 million purchase of Canon Communications, announced Thursday—awaits the necessary regulatory approvals, UBM CEO David Levin said he was not done making deals. "We're going to continue with bolt-on acquisitions, although probably not at the size of Canon," he said in an interview with BtoB.

In the past five years, Levin said, UBM has done 80 deals, 37 of them in North America, including the Canon transaction. The company has spent about $1 billion, $765 million of that in North America, on acquisitions. Currently, it generates more than half of its revenue from North America, and once Canon is integrated that figure will be close to 60%, Levin said.

Part of the attraction of the Canon deal was the potential for integrating Canon's medical device manufacturing trade shows with the exhibitions infrastructure UBM has in Asia and other parts of the world. In fact, Levin said the Canon deal arose from discussions he had with Canon CEO Charles McCurdy about working together to create a global presence for Canon's trade shows.

Levin said he remains bullish about b-to-b media and that UBM's "flat" structure has enabled it to serve the company's individual markets when other, more centralized businesses have abandoned them.

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