VSS sells Hanley Wood for $650m

Media investment bank Veronis Suhler Stevenson sold construction trade publisher Hanley Wood for $650m, more than 12.5 times the media company’s EBITDA.

Media investment bank Veronis Suhler Stevenson has sold residential and commercial construction trade publisher Hanley Wood to an investment group led by JP Morgan Partners for $650 million (€520 million), according to a source. The selling price is more than 12.5 times Hanley Wood’s EBITDA.

The investment consortium also includes New York-based private equity firm Wasserstein & Company, along with current and former management of Hanley Wood. 

VSS purchased the company with its third fund, VS&A Communication Partners III, in 1999 for $260 million and has since made 13 add-on acquisitions. The media group, which publishes 22 titles including Builder and Remodeling, also hosts industry events, offers market data products and operates 17 websites.  

[Hanley Wood] has grown a lot because of the acquisitions we’ve made and it’s grown a lot on its own.

Chris Russell, managing director, Veronis Suhler Stevenson

Chris Russell, a managing director with the firm, said that, because of the add-ons, Hanley Wood now has more diverse revenue streams, citing its home plans division, data services, trade shows, marketing efforts and advertising.

“It’s grown a lot because of the acquisitions we’ve made and it’s grown a lot on its own,” he said.

VSS recently completed the sale of business-to-business medical publisher Canon Communication to Apprise Media, reportedly for more than $200 million. Canon expanded in a similar fashion to Hanley Wood, diversifying its revenue stream with a foray into trade shows.