IBM acquires environmental performance management company Envizi

IBM has acquired Envizi, a data and analytics software provider for environmental performance management. The acquisition closed on January 11, 2022. Financial details were not disclosed.

Companies are under mounting pressure from regulators, investors, and consumers to progress toward more sustainable and socially responsible business operations – and to demonstrate these measures in a robust and verifiable way. In fact, corporate social responsibility and environmental sustainability risks tied as the third highest concerns for organizations, as ranked by large corporations in a 2021 Forrester report. However, the various types of data companies need to understand and report on sustainability initiatives remains highly fragmented and difficult for all relevant parties to access.

Envizi’s software automates the collection and consolidation of more than 500 data types and supports major sustainability reporting frameworks. Its user-friendly and easily customised dashboards enable companies to analyse, manage and report on environmental goals, identify efficiency opportunities and assess sustainability risk. Envizi’s solutions help streamline the management of these tasks as part of broader Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) reporting initiatives, while also providing users with valuable sustainability insights to inform business strategy.

Kareem Yusuf, PhD, General Manager, IBM AI Applications, said, “To drive real progress toward sustainability, companies need the ability to transform data into predictive insights that help them make more intelligent, actionable decisions every day. Envizi’s software provides companies with a single source of truth for analyzing and understanding emissions data across the full landscape of their business operations and dramatically accelerates IBM’s growing arsenal of AI technologies for helping businesses create more sustainable operations and supply chains.”

Available as a SaaS solution and running in multi-cloud environments, Envizi serves leading brands such as Microsoft, Qantas, CBRE, Uber, abrdn and Celestica, and its software can be applied to activities across a variety of industries.

USA, Armonk, NY & Australia, Eveleigh NSW

Schneider Electric acquires renewable energy platform Zeigo

Schneider Electric has acquired start-up climate-tech platform Zeigo. The acquisition will complement Schneider Electric’s portfolio of clean energy services and solutions and advance the company’s digital energy transformation ambitions. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Steve Wilhite, SVP for Schneider Electric’s Sustainable Business Division, said, “As the world’s largest advisor to corporations on renewable energy procurement, we know that speed and complexity are two of the barriers that keep some corporations out of the PPA market. By adding the Zeigo technology and team to our existing portfolio of services and solutions, we will be able to provide even greater value to our clients worldwide.”

Organisations face increasing pressure to decarbonise as climate risks and global ambitions for an equitable energy transition both accelerate. For the past 10 years, one of the most common and effective means for companies to begin to decarbonise has been utility-scale renewable energy power purchase agreements (PPAs). To date, organisations have voluntarily purchased more than 77 gigawatts of wind, solar, and geothermal power via PPA.

The demand for PPAs is expected to grow as net-zero ambitions accelerate globally. More than 2,000 companies have already joined the Science-based Targets Initiative with the intention of mapping their decarbonisation aspirations to a 1.5 degree Celsius global warming threshold. A further 300+ corporations have joined the Climate Group’s RE100, committing to achieve 100% renewable energy in their operations. Taken in total, these commitments have led Bloomberg New Energy Finance to predict a shortfall in corporate renewable energy of 269 terawatt-hours by 2030.

Renewable energy procurement is time-consuming and complicated, requiring significant expert evaluation of projects and risks alongside the satisfaction of stakeholders up to and including corporate boards. By combining Zeigo’s AI capabilities with its existing advisory services, Schneider Electric will deploy enhanced collaborative intelligence in the energy and environmental commodity procurement process.

France, Rueil-Malmaison & USA, Andover, MA & UK, London

RX acquires 3rd Street Group, organisers of Big Data LDN

RX (formerly Reed Exhibitions) has acquired 3rd Street Group Ltd, the owners and organisers of Big Data LDN.

Big Data LDN is one of the UK’s largest data and analytics conferences and exhibitions, hosting leading data, analytics experts and suppliers. The event brings together the data and analytics community in a unique exhibition format for the sector, including a superior, end user-led conference programme. The event takes place in the autumn at Olympia.

Big Data LDN will join the RX portfolio in the UK, with founder Bill Hammond remaining as its event director. 

Announcing the acquisition, Hugh Jones, RX CEO, said: “Despite the impact that the pandemic has had on the events industry, we continue our longstanding tradition of acquiring key events in growth sectors and markets. Big Data LDN is a perfect fit for our portfolio, and I am delighted that Bill and his team will be joining RX to develop Big Data LDN even further. Their professionalism, knowledge and dedication are astonishing, and I’m excited to work with them to grow this event in the coming years.” 

Bill Hammond, founder of 3rd Street Group Ltd, said: “The global big data and business analytics sector continues to grow in the UK. Joining RX will enable us to build the event exponentially with support from RX’s suite of technology platforms, global network and operations expertise. A key issue within big data remains security and privacy and I look forward to working with RX UK’s existing Infosecurity brand to deliver even more value to our customers across the data and analytics sector. It’s going to be an exciting growth period for us and we can’t wait to get started.”

UK, London

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With Intelligence (Pageant Media) – multiple acquisitions since February 2020

In February 2020, Intermediate Capital Group took majority control of the UK’s Pageant Media for a reported £106.5 million in a deal which is believed to have valued the company at £145m. It was the first investment by ICG’s Europe Mid-Market Fund, which closed in late 2019 at €1 billion

Pageant Media, now rebranded as With Intelligence, was privately owned by its CEO Charlie Kerr, who founded the business in 1998. The company’s business model at the time of IMG’s investment included a membership programme in which financial professionals pay an annual fee to receive news, information, and data, and attend invitation-only events. The company organised around 200 events per year and had reported £32 million in revenues in 2019. It had more than 2,500 institutional clients worldwide and had 240 people across its offices in London, New York, Hong Kong, and Cardiff.

Since then, Pageant Media has gone on to make a number of acquisitions, including:

  1. May 2020 – Eurekahedge from the Mizuho Bank, of Japan. Based in Hong Kong, Eurekahedge had annual revenues of $5 million and an operating profit of around $1 million. The company, which was founded in 2001, offers a database of information on hedge funds and offers the Eurekahedge fund indices.
  2. November 2020 – Falk Marques Group (now rebranded With Intelligence) acquired from Beth Falk and Raul Marqués who jointly founded the business in 2006. Falk Marques Group produces conferences and networking forums that are focused on advancing women in the private equity, venture capital and alternative investment communities. It launched the Women’s Private Equity Summit in 2008 and its sister event, the Women’s Alternative Investment Summit in 2009. Falk Marques Group had around $4 million revenue. Pageant Media are reported to have made an initial payment of $4 million. This to be followed by an earn-out which may eventually value the business at $20 million.
  3. June 2021 – the acquisition of Pension Funds Online. The business organises up-to-date financial and contact information for pension funds, in the UK and Europe, through a modern, searchable digital interface. First produced in print form in 1978, as the so-called Blue and Red Books, the online database is today used by asset managers, investment consultants and other service providers to drive their investor outreach strategies.
  4. June 2021 – Hedge Fund Alert acquired from Green Street. Hedge Fund Alert is read by hedge funds, prime brokers, and other service providers to get the earliest look at key dealings and intelligence in the hedge fund arena. The U.S.-based publication now sits alongside HFM and Eurekahedge.
  5. August 2021 – UK-based Savvy Investor from its owner Andrew Perrins for a reported £6 million initial payment and a further £2 million based on performance targets. Savvy Media is a knowledge network for institutional investors, providing members with access to a deep resource of white papers and articles covering global investment and pensions issues. It had £2 million in revenue and £800k EBITDA.

With Intelligence is now a global business information organisation, focused on the asset management industry. Now with over 450 people in seven offices across three continents, the product portfolio includes data, insight and events, and has grown to cover hedge funds, private equity, real estate, private debt, and traditional asset management, with more than 3,000 institutional customers worldwide.

UK, London

Emerald Holdings acquired MJBiz

Emerald Holding has acquired MJBiz, the event producer and content platform serving the wide range of companies operating in the cannabis industry. Emerald paid $120 million as initial consideration upon closing of the transaction, with potential future payments contingent on the performance of MJBiz through 2022.

Founded in 2011, MJBiz produces MJBizCon, the oldest and leading B2B cannabis trade show in America, the Emerald Conference and related media brands including MJBizDaily, Hemp Industry Daily and MJBiz Magazine.

In 2021, MJBiz’s revenues were approximately $27 million, which were near pre-pandemic levels. MJBizCon featured more than 1,200 exhibiting companies and 27,000 attendees, including over 18,000 paid registrations, at the October 2021 event.

The MJBiz platform delivered 38% compound annual revenue growth in the three years prior to the pandemic (2017-2019). In addition to operating the cannabis industry trade show, the MJBiz brand is a source for actionable business intelligence in the cannabis industry.

MJBiz management, including CEO Chris Walsh, Senior Vice President of Events and Sales, Jess Tyler, and Senior Vice President of Content and Audience Development, Pam Moore, will continue to lead the day-to-day operations of the business. MJBiz co-founders and Board members, Cassandra Farrington and Anne Holland, will continue to consult with the business.

Hervé Sedky, Emerald’s President and CEO, said, “We have long admired MJBiz’s sterling reputation for being the most trusted event and content producer serving the business side of the cannabis and hemp industries and their respective participants. MJBiz’s leading event and content portfolio coupled with their 365-day engagement platform, which connects the entire cannabis supply chain, will diversify our collective product offerings, enhance our growth profile and enable us to deliver even greater value to our customers over the long term.”

USA, San Juan Capistrano, CA & Lakewood, CO

Claverley Group acquires HPCi Media

Claverley Group has acquired HPCi Media. The deal was announced in the Cleverly Group owned Express and Star. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

London based HPCi Media focuses on the beauty, wellness and health industries with titles such as Cosmetics Business and Pure Beauty.

Claverley Group chief executive Phil Inman said: “We are delighted to have concluded the acquisition of HPCi Media. The business benefits from a loyal customer base and has enjoyed year on year revenue growth for a number of years. We look forward to working with the current team to support further growth and development.”

Wolverhampton-based Claverley Group is an independently-owned specialist media group which includes The Express & Star, Shropshire Star and MNA Digital. It is the third acquisition by the Claverley Group since 2018. The previous two were the acquisitions of children’s magazine publisher Kennedy and creative design and print management business Cubiquity.

Read the Express and Star story here.

UK, Wolverhampton & London

LabX Media Group acquires G2 Intelligence from Plain Language Media

B2B science media company LabX Media Group has acquired the information services and event assets of G2 Intelligence from Plain Language Media LLLP. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Plain Language Media has retained The Licensing Letter, The Licensing Sourcebook and Licensing Deals & Data, plus its Medical Office Manager and Law Office Manager franchises.

In a statement this week, LabX Media Group CEO Bob Kafato said: “We are excited to formally announce a new addition to the LMG family, G2 Intelligence. G2 Intelligence is a digital content news platform that provides timely, accurate analysis of legal and regulatory news that directly affects the laboratory environment. The brand has a successful 30-year history of providing the diagnostic lab industry with print and digital newsletters, online information services, special reports, and live events. Above all else, G2 Intelligence aligns with our mission of helping scientists make the world better and is a fantastic fit for LabX Media Group, so we are thrilled to have them join our talented team.”

Canada, Ontario and Canada, British Columbia & USA, New London, CT & UK, London

A Fusion Deal: Uniquest sold to Keystone Education Group

UniQuest, a UK-based student engagement, conversion, and retention service, has been sold to the Keystone Education Group. Fusion Corporate Partners acted as corporate advisor to Uniquest. The Fusion team was led by Paul Slight, Director at Fusion. The terms of the deals were not disclosed.

Founded in 2013, UniQuest is led by co-founder & Chair Natalie Letcher and co-founder and CEO Rachel Fletcher, who will continue to oversee daily operations alongside Keystone’s executive leadership team. 

“With so much noise in the higher education sector for our university colleagues to deal with, not to mention growing student demand and increased student expectations, we provide confidence to our partners in what they’re doing despite all this change. We bring our focused and deep expertise in student engagement to Keystone. Combined with their impressive global footprint and student reach, together we will be able to help more universities around the world reach their student recruitment goals, delivering unparalleled student support,” said Rachel Fletcher, CEO of UniQuest.

“The combination of our business with Keystone will help accelerate our ability to innovate and adapt to changing market conditions. Together, we are even more well-positioned to help institutions remain competitive by enabling them to provide best-in-class, flexible support to prospective and current students,” Fletcher said.

“Combining UniQuest’s operations with Keystone’s recruitment services will enable us to offer extremely robust student recruitment, enrollment, and retention services to our 5 500 customer base, across our key geographic markets, including the US, the UK, and continental Europe,” said Erik Harrell, Keystone’s CEO.

“With the acquisition of UniQuest, we will be able to help our customers face their enrollment challenges head-on and gain an edge over their competition with the help of our end-to-end global student recruitment, enrollment, and retention services,” Harrell said.

“We are committed to serving as a strategic partner for our customers, acting more as an extension of their own recruitment and admissions teams than the traditional agency or third-party vendor models. For students, our extensive counseling services will ensure their journey to the classroom is as painless and informed as possible, helping them every step along the way.”

“This is a game-changer in the student counseling and recruitment space, presenting a unique opportunity for Keystone to disrupt and innovate the existing traditional counseling and agency model that has prevailed for years,” he said. 

“We will also be able to harness our combined data and insights from over millions of students every year to provide enhanced predictive modeling and forecasting to our customer base, making improvements along the entire recruitment value chain.” 

The deal comes at a time when institutions are facing growing enrollment challenges, from the impact of falling US domestic enrollments on US universities to the impact of Brexit on EU student applications to UK universities, all amidst a backdrop of ever-increasing global competition for student enrollments. 

The deal is the latest acquisition amid a flurry of organizational growth for the Keystone Education Group in 2021, and follows Keystone’s recent merger with EMG and acquisitions of FindAUniversity, College Scholarships USA (CSUSA), and AGM Education. 

Oslo, Norway & London, UK

GlobalData to acquire the Life Sciences business of IHS Markit

Data analytics and consulting company GlobalData Plc is to acquire the Life Sciences business of IHS Markit Ltd. (“LS”).

LS offers comprehensive and independent coverage of drug pricing, reimbursement and market access trends, as well as healthcare forecasts and healthcare economic data microsimulation modelling.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed, completion is expected to occur during Q4 of 2021 and will be funded from the Group’s existing cash resources and banking facilities.

Commenting on the acquisition Mike Danson, Chief Executive Officer, said: “The Life Sciences acquisition represents a strategic bolt-on to our already strong pharmaceuticals data, insights and analytics services. The addition of drug pricing data, as well as other critical Life Sciences data and analysis, further confirms our industry leading breadth and depth in the pharmaceuticals space.

I would like to take this opportunity to welcome our new group of highly talented colleagues to the Group and wish them every success for the future within GlobalData”

Gustav Ando, Vice President and Head of Life Sciences at IHS Markit, added: “We are looking forward to becoming an integral part of the GlobalData Pharma and Life Sciences Team. This unique combination will enable us to provide our current and expanded client base with a much broader service offering, through synergy with existing GlobalData services, and on a single fully integrated platform.”

UK, London

ROAR B2B acquires Environment Media Group Ltd

ROAR B2B, the events and media group, has acquired Environment Media Group Ltd (EMG), the UK specialist media and events business focused on the waste management and environment sector. The deal will bring ROAR’s current event RWM into the same portfolio as LetsRecycle. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

EMG, which was founded in 2000, provides freely available topical news reports, legislative updates, and a range of events for those involved in delivering on the challenges faced in moving to a low carbon economy. The business is led by Rob Mowat, who has led the Company for close to 20 years. Mowat will stay with the business heading up the Environment portfolio at ROAR B2B.

ROAR B2B, operates in three main industry sectors, Business Technology, Social Care, and Environment. Headline events in their portfolio include RWM, Call & Contact Centre Expo, B2B Marketing Expo and Naidex. These events place a focus on sectors that are critical to how we live, communicate and work, both now and in the future. From effective management of the ageing population and large-scale commercial recycling to the technology of tomorrow.

Commenting on the acquisition, Duncan Kirk, CEO of ROAR B2B said “This acquisition represents a very exciting move for our business. We very much look forward to working with EMG, to integrate our existing offering and expand our capabilities going forward. Having admired and closely followed their progress, we are delighted to now have the opportunity to work with Rob and his team. Their knowledge and experience in the sector will be invaluable in realising our shared vision for the development and long-term growth of the business.”

“We are thrilled to be joining forces with ROAR B2B, this acquisition will allow us to continue growing our business” said Rob Mowat, Managing Director of EMG. “We look forward to working with the RWM team to form the No.1 media partner to the environment and waste management market.”

UK, London