American Business Media Merges With Software Association
After 107 years as an independent organization, American Business Media is merging with the Software and Information Industry Association. What does it mean for the future of B2B media?
Based on their names alone, it doesn’t sound like an obvious merger, but the two industries have more in common than you’d think.
On April 10, American Business Media, the association of business information and media companies, announced it is merging with the Software and Information Industry Association, a trade group for the software and digital content industry.
ABM president and CEO Clark Pettit cited disruption in the B2B industry as the driver behind the merger. “Our members are rapidly evolving and expanding their businesses with new capabilities, business models, and platforms, and that requires access to new thought leadership, research, and networking,” Pettit said in a statement. “The combination of SIIA and ABM creates the breadth and scale required to powerfully represent, promote, and defend the entire business information and media industry. It creates the nexus that brings together all relevant business models and technologies and forms a platform for future strategic alliances.”
ABM will merge with SIIA’s content division. The two organizations will also join forces in government affairs. Both the ABM and SIIA boards of directors approved the merger unanimously.
“Together our memberships form the cornerstone of B2B,” said SIIA President Ken Wasch in a statement. “By joining forces, we can bring the entire industry together and magnify opportunities for connection so the right people can connect in the right environments and bring innovations to market.”
According to ABM’s official release, the plan comes after “18 months of effort and commitment by the ABM staff and board of directors” to preserve the association’s legacy while “gaining sufficient scale to represent the full range of B2B business models.” Layoffs at ABM are not occurring at the present time, and the association’s New York office will be kept open, according to BtoB Media Business.
The decision highlights the struggles the B2B media industry faces while it adapts to an ever-changing content landscape. “Over the long term, ABM would not have been financially sustainable,” Pettit said in Folio. “The industry doesn’t need less value from its association, they need more. You’re going to see more and more of this.”
The action is subject to approval by ABM’s membership later this month at its annual conference.
What do you think the merger signals for the future of B2B media? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section.