Business Insider and eMarketer combine into one intelligence company
Business Insider and eMarketer are taking their relationship to the next level with a merging of their intelligence units, as parent company Axel Springer invests in serving more corporate clients.
On Thursday, Business Insider and eMarketer made their union official, after both had operated independently since being acquired by Axel Springer. Business Insider Intelligence, the research arm of the media company, and eMarketer will fall under the leadership of Business Insider CEO Henry Blodget, while eMarketer CEO Geoff Ramsey will take on a chief evangelist role, the company announced.
“We just realized this product suite would work exceptionally well for clients together,” said Blodget, who discussed the reorganization during a phone interview this week. “So we decided to combine the companies, and the overall research firm will be focused on digital transformation—we think that’s an area where there will be great demand for data and insight for many years to come.”
Axel Springer, the German-based media conglomerate, is in the middle of a broader structural change. The company is looking to buy back shares with the help of private-equity firm KKR to take the company private. This could free it up to invest in areas like corporate intelligence and research because the company would be run outside the demands of public shareholders.
“It’s a huge opportunity for both entities to tackle fin-tech, health care, education, as well as media and marketing and all the stuff that we’ve been covering,” Ramsey said. “There are lots of opportunities for exploration and growth [and] eMarketer will now actually be able to have way more resources to cover the global market across all those verticals.”
Blodget and Ramsey stated the merger will not lead to layoffs. Instead, Blodget said the combined company will grow from 200 employees to 400 in the next five years. The two companies will keep their separate names under the new structure.
Axel Springer bought Business Insider for $450 million in 2015 and eMarketer for $250 million in 2016. The company is trying to leverage eMarketer and Business Insider Intelligence to cater to corporate clients that need analysis of their respective sectors. EMarketer has 1,200 corporate clients, according to the company.
“If you’re an executive within an industry that’s being transformed rapidly with digital technology,” Blodget said, “there’s going to be a need for insight and data at a very deep level about the changes in the industry.”
There are still details to be worked out, the executives said, such as the subscription costs for gaining access to reports from both companies. Business Insider does not publicly disclose pricing for its intelligence program because it can vary depending on the customer.
“We’re really turning the dial up lately on prescription,” Ramsey says. “Not just the data and analysis of 'here’s what’s going on' and 'where the bucket is going,' but 'what do I do with that stuff?' That is what everybody, at the end of the day, is trying to get to.”