Media Fortune Fame & Folly

Arc buys (more) farming events

Arc Media Holdings, the UK-based exhibitions and B2B media company led by former UBM executive Simon Foster and backed by EagleTree Capital, announced has made its second acquisition in four months. It is buying five rural sector events in the UK – Farm Business Innovation, Holiday Park & Resort Innovation, Family Attraction Expo, Country House Business Innovation, and Leisure Food & Beverage Expo – from Fortem International. The events will become part of Arc’s Agriconnect business (Farmers Guardian and LAMMA) which was acquired from the private equity-owned AgriBriefing in August for £20.5m ( 7 x EBITDA).

The five co-located events in the portfolio are said to connect “UK farmers and land owners who are seeking alternative sources of income”. The price has not been disclosed.

In the year ended 30 November 2020, Fortem (previously known as Prysm Media Group) was lossmaking, had a cash balance of £80k, and net liabilities of £333k. It had been profitable in 2019. Its web site makes the claim that Fortem is “the world’s fastest-growing B2B trade show company” comprising events in the US, Singapore, Hong Kong and the UK.

It is believed that Arc has at least one other deal in negotiation. Simon Foster was a longtime senior executive of former trade show group UBM and was formerly CEO of the Paris-based exhibition organiser Comexposium.