Incisive Media

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Incisive Media is a publisher of business media. It is based in London, United Kingdom, with offices in New York, Hong Kong, Singapore and Beijing.

History and management[edit]

Incisive Media is a business to business (B2B) publisher founded by Tim Weller, James Hanbury and Nick Rapley in 1994 with the launch of Investment Week. It merged with Timothy Benn Publishing (owner of Post Magazine) in August 2000.[1] It was listed on the main market of the London Stock Exchange in December 2000 which valued the business at c. £73m. During the next six years the business completed a number of acquisitions including Matching Hat, Risk Waters, Initiative Europe (Unquote), Search Engine Strategies, Global Professional Media, Asian Venture Capital Journal and Pacific Prospect. In 2004, Incisive Media launched a new web-based conference activity, Conjecture Limited, in partnership with BrightTALK, a webinar and video solution provider. BrightTALK owns 25% of Conjecture Limited.[2]

However, as a public company it was difficult to take advantage of some of the larger consolidation opportunities that existed, so in December 2006 it was taken private again in a management buyout deal back by Apax Partners[3] valued at £275 million.[4]

Within a few months of going private, Incisive Media completed the acquisitions of MSM International and UK publishing business VNU Business Publications Ltd, formerly part of The Nielsen Company, from venture capital group 3i in 2007.[5] In August 2007 the company completed a $630m deal to acquire ALM, an American magazine publisher that was backed by Bruce Wasserstein, doubling the size of the group again.[4]

However, following the collapse of Lehman Brothers and the downturn in the financial services market, Incisive Media's revenue came under significant pressure and the debt levels were no longer sustainable. In October 2009 Incisive Media announced the refinancing of the Group's debt.[6] ALM was separated from the Group and is now owned by RBS and Apax Partners. Incisive Media agreed to a debt-for-equity swap with its lenders, who are now the owners of the business with management.

The company employs more than 750 people working in London, New York, Hong Kong, Singapore, China and India. The new chairman of Incisive Media, Helen Alexander,[7] is the current President of the Confederation of British Industry.[8] Brian Larcombe, former CEO of 3i, has also recently been appointed to the Board as a non-Executive.[9]

Computeractive and the British Journal of Photography were sold in 2013.[10]


Incisive Media publishes more than 100 titles (in print and online) and offers a range of conferences, events and training products. It provides information and education for professionals working in financial and other professional services, including investment bankers, asset managers, financial advisors, accountants, lawyers, photographers, IT professionals and online marketers.[11]

It publishes a range of different magazines which focus on the B2B market, targeting different regions. In the Alternative Assets Division, there are six different papers covering private equity in Europe, for example Benelux unquote for the Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg region.

Financial Director[edit]

Financial Director magazine[12] is a long-running monthly publication dedicated to the information needs of financial directors. According to ABC, the magazine currently has a circulation of 19,516,[13] making it one of the highest circulation magazines in its sector.[citation needed]

Within the wider accountancy world, Financial Director magazine is possibly best known for its annual survey of audit fees, which now encompasses both FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 companies.[14]

It is currently edited by Melanie Stern.[15]

Other publications[edit]

The group's publications include:



  • (formerly – technology news
  • – business technology

Notable former titles include Personal Computer World.


The group received five nominations for the June 2010 Association of Online Publishers awards,[17] and was voted Digital Publisher of the Year.[18]


  1. ^ Timothy Benn Publishing to merge with City Financial Communications.
  2. ^ "Incisive Media plc, preliminary results for the year ended 31 December 2004". 7 March 2005. 
  3. ^ "Incisive Media investors hope Apax bid will trigger auction". The Guardian. 22 September 2006. 
  4. ^ a b "Incisive Media purchases US publisher ALM". The Guardian. 5 July 2007. 
  5. ^ "Incisive to buy VNU Business Publications". Daily Telegraph. February 6, 2007. 
  6. ^ "Incisive Media reaches agreement on refinancing of the Group Incisive press release" (Press release). 8 September 2009. 
  7. ^ "Incisive Press Release" (Press release). 14 October 2009. 
  8. ^ "CBI: Business tax increases should be taken off the menu". 20 May 2010. 
  9. ^ "Incisive Press Release" (Press release). 4 March 2010. 
  10. ^ [1]
  11. ^ "Incisive Media - history page". 
  12. ^ issn=0961-2556
  13. ^ "Five minutes with... Andrew Sawers". PR Success Monthly. Brighton, East Sussex, United Kingdom: New Venture Publishing Ltd. January 2009. Retrieved 24 November 2010. "The magazine is a leading financial monthly with a circulation of 19,516." 
  14. ^ "Audit fees and surveys". London and Milton Keynes, United Kingdom: Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales. 2010. Retrieved 25 November 2010. 
  15. ^ Financial Director. Accessed 24 November 2010.
  16. ^ a b c d Dominguez, Martin (3 September 2009). "Incisive Media to split in two as UK operation falters". Press Gazette. Retrieved 18 October 2012. 
  17. ^ "Nominations for AOP awards". The Guardian. 23 April 2010. 
  18. ^ "2010 AOP Award Winners". 

External links[edit]