PR M&A Up Again in Q4 2009

After zero mergers and acquisitions in the first two quarters of 2009 and two in Q3, there were three PR M&A deals in Q4 2009 with the acquiring companies spending a total of $52 million. The numbers come from investment bank Petsky Prunier’s Advertising & Promotion M&A Overview.

Which three deals happened in Q4? Marketing and e-commerce agency Definition 6’s acquisition of Leach Communications, holding company Huntsworth’s acquisition of public affairs agency Dutko Worldwide, and Edelman’s acquisition of “bi-partisan digital grassroots advocacy firm” Grassroots Enterprises.

In our 2010 predictions series, many PR executives predicted M&A activity will increase this year.

One thing is certain: PR and marketing agency acquisitions remain a tiny slice of the M&A pie, with software and information, marketing technology and digital media accounting for almost 75% of total spending.