Forrester Research acquired JupiterResearch for $23 million in cash plus assumed liabilities. JupiterResearch joins Forrester’s Marketing & Strategy Client Group. Click here to read the press release and click here to read a blog post by analyst Josh Bernoff.
The key question for any analyst firm merger & acquisition (M&A) activity is whether the acquired analysts – the core intellectual property value – stay with their new employer or leave. For example, in the case of Gartner’s acquisition of META more than 50% of the analysts left voluntarily or through buyouts within a few months.
Our initial impression is that the JupiterResearch acquisition is more of an expansion of Forrester’s services than a consolidation move to eliminate a competitor. This is similar to Forrester’s Giga acquisition, but different from Gartner’s grab of META which was clearly a strategic move to keep META out of Yankee Group and kill a competitor. Regardless of motivation, it is still possible that Forrester will lose many of the analysts unless they execute the integration correctly.
In addition to what happens to JupiterResearch analysts, this M&A event could also impact Forrester analysts as coverage assignments might be changed. Regardless of changes in coverage or even departures of Forrester analysts, there is a high probability that analysts in the Marketing & Strategy Client Group will find their productivity negatively impacted during the transition period.
For JupiterResearch prospects and clients currently negotiating contracts or renewals it makes sense not to execute on any new contracts. If you are an existing Forrester client, you should focus on whether or not you will need to expand your Forrester contract as access to the acquired Jupiter published research and analysts might be included in the current RoleView offering. For prospects and clients of Jupiter who are not Forrester clients, the situation is much more complex as you have to weigh the potential value of a Forrester contract if the Jupiter analysts you are interested in decide to leave the merged firm.
For analyst relations (AR) professionals, this M&A event impacts your analyst lists and outreach plans. Carefully monitor changes to analyst status (employment and research) coverage of both Jupiter and Forrester analysts and adjust your plans accordingly.
There are a number of relevant Forrester and Jupiter analysts that Twitter on a regular basis (see Analyst Twitter Directory). Because of the off-the-cuff nature of tweeting, monitoring the analysts’ tweets will provide an indication of the analyst morale and other transition issues.
SageCircle Advisory clients are encouraged to schedule an inquiry to discuss what this event means to them. Contact us at 650-274-8309 or inquiry [at] sagecircle dot com.
Bottom Line: While this M&A does not appear to be focused on killing a competitor, this does not mean that ongoing access to JupiterResearch’s analysts is guaranteed. Prospects of JupiterResearch need to evaluate the ongoing business value of a new Forrester contract if key analysts leave the combined firm.