Trade Show Industry M&A Veteran Kathleen Thomas Joins JEGI

Kathleen Thomas, who has worked for several high-profile investment banking firms in the business-to-business exhibitions and conferences space, was named managing director at New York City-based JEGI, effective immediately.

Thomas will further expand JEGI’s global leadership across the global media, information, marketing, software and tech‐enabled services sectors, according to company officials.

“We are delighted to welcome Kathleen on board,” said Wilma Jordan, founder and CEO of JEGI.

Jordan added, “She and Richard Mead, our long‐tenured managing director and B2B specialist, together bring a formidable depth of experience and portfolio of successful transactions across the B2B media, information and marketing sectors, with a special focus on events, that is unmatched in the industry.”

Thomas has more than 20 years of experience specializing in mergers and acquisitions advisory across the business‐to‐business and consumer media, communications and marketing services sectors, with expertise in content and information, trade shows, conferences, digital media and marketing, and the outsourced services that support these businesses.  

“I am thrilled to join JEGI and its unique investment banking platform, where I can leverage my advisory experience and deep network of industry relationships with JEGI’s resources, strong global brand and thought leadership excellence.  I look forward to working closely with my new team to offer a broader capability set and further maximize value for our clients.”

She added that JEGI was “clearly the premium platform in the (trade show industry) space” and that the scope of coverage and number of people dedicated to B2B sector at the firm was “unparalleled.”

JEGI has more than 50 employees and four offices globally – New York, Boston, London and Sydney.

In addition, the company has completed more than 600 total transactions, and in the past five years, there have been 34 event-related transactions, not including ones that were completed by Thomas prior to her joining JEGI.

Before joining JEGI, Thomas served as a managing partner at Drake Star Partners (formerly Redwood Capital).  

Before that, she led the media and marketing services practice at Berkery Noyes for 12 years, and she previously served nine years at Veronis Suhler Stevenson.

Thomas has been instrumental in the successful completion of more than 100 transactions, including deals involving Informa, Thomson Reuters, Euromoney, Wolters Kluwer, LexisNexis, Emerald Expositions, and many other prominent organizations.

As far as what she sees happening in the near future of the trade show M&A market Thomas said, “I expect the robust trend to continue. There is enormous interest in our space overall.” She added that there were a lot of buyers and values were strong.

Thomas said trade shows were of particular interest to buyers because of not only their strong revenues, but also because of their positive growth rates.

In her new role at JEGI, she added it was “the most obvious place for me to be.” 

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