Clarion Events
Image credit: European Utility Week

Clarion Events has announced the acquisition of PennWell Corporation, a privately-held events and B2B media and marketing services company based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA.

Clarion Events is owned by funds managed by Blackstone, one of the world’s leading investment firms. Metering & Smart Energy International is part of the Clarion Group.

The acquisition brings together two of the industry’s most well-respected names to create one of the largest events companies in the world. It also marks the latest in a series of global acquisitions by Clarion, which includes its 2015 purchase of Urban Expositions, now rebranded as Clarion UX.

“This deal delivers significant benefits for both companies,” said Clarion’s executive chairman Simon Kimble.

“PennWell’s roster of market-leading events strongly enhances Clarion’s portfolio. Our global network and depth of resources will further strengthen PennWell’s offerings, enhancing opportunities for growth and expansion across North America and globally,” added Kimble.

“Clarion is committed to building a strong and competitive presence in North America. The acquisition of PennWell reflects not only the quality of their portfolio, but also our companies’ shared legacy of creating innovative events that demonstrate our continued leadership in this industry,” said Clarion UX CEO Greg Topalian.

PennWell vice chairman Frank T. Lauinger stated, “We have been a family-owned business since my great grandfather founded the company 108 years ago, originally to serve the oil and gas industry. Finding the right partner going forward was paramount for our family and for our employees and we are confident Clarion shares our values and will continue the legacy of PennWell across all markets PennWell now serves.”

Clarion’s portfolio of leading exhibition, conference and media brands, earned the company the “Most Respected Company for 2017” accolade from the UK’s Association of Event Organisers. Clarion announced in February it had acquired Hong Kong-based Global Sources, a leading events organiser and on-line B2B marketplace operator.

PennWell president and CEO Mark Wilmoth commented “…Merging with Clarion will enhance our offerings to the worldwide customers of PennWell’s diversified portfolio of events, including the POWER-GEN series, DistribuTECH for electricity distribution, and FDIC for the fire market, as well as media brands such as the Oil & Gas Journal.”

PennWell was represented in this transaction by JEGI, an independent investment bank for the global media, information, marketing, software and tech-enabled services sectors.