Britain’s Informa Acquires VIRGO

HIL ANDERSON, SENIOR EDITOR

Phoenix, AZ – British exhibitions organizer Informa expanded its presence in the U.S. trade show market by acquiring Phoenix-based VIRGO and its six-event portfolio.

The deal was expected to close once U.S. antitrust regulators give their approval. Terms were not announced.

Informa said the acquisition was particularly attractive because VIRGO’s annual SupplySide West show complimented Informa’s Vitafoods brand, which covers the European, Asian and Latin American market. “Both companies expect there will be some attractive synergies by bringing their Health & Nutrition assets into the same portfolio and creating a global brand proposition,” Informa said in a written statement. “The transaction also provides Informa with an established base in the U.S., the largest exhibition market globally.”

Along with SupplySide West and five other conferences and trade shows, VIRGO publishes nine national trade web sites and six affiliated magazines. It also operates online training and accreditation programs.

Informa announced this Summer it was consolidating its trade show operations, which include 15 events, into two separate divisions. The Knowledge & Networking Division will include content-driven events. The Global Exhibitions unit will manage B-to-B events under the direction of Chief Executive Will Morris, who was formerly with Reed Exhibitions and the Dubai World Trade Centre.

Reach Will Morris at +44 (0)20 7017 5000 or will.morris@informa.com; John Siefert, CEO of VIRGO, at (480) 990-1101 or jsiefert@vpico.com