4 January 2005 IT analyst company Gartner is to buy rival Meta Group for $162 million, to strengthen its reporting in the global information technology industry.
The deal, which is expected to close in the first half of 2005, follows a spate of vendor tie-ups in 2004. This underlying trend for vendor consolidation has restricted the number of decision-makers they conduct business with.
Both Gartner and Meta provide impartial advice, research and consulting services to buyers and vendors in the information technology sector.
In recent times downward pressure on IT budgets and the availability of free information on the internet has affected profitability at both research firms. Net income at Gartner dropped 30% to $12 million in the first nine months of 2004, while META Group reported a net loss of $1 million for the 12 months to 30 September 2004.
The deal would also see the IT analyst industry dominated by just three big players: Gartner, Forrester Research and IDC.
In 2003, Forrester bought out rival Giga Group in a $60 million deal.
According to Gartner CEO Gene Hall, the $162 million deal will enhance its sales efforts in this competitive market. “Gartner and META Group are both based in Stamford and share complementary business models, which will allow easy integration of Meta Group’s offerings into Gartner’s existing service portfolio.”