Apex Insight client reviews shows high satisfaction with report quality and value-for-money

At Apex Insight, we enjoy speaking to clients who use our reports. Anyone who buys from us is entitled to have a conference call to discuss the report and ask any questions they have arising from, or as a result of, it. We also carry out regular customer satisfaction research to see what clients think of our work, how we can improve it and what new areas they would like us to cover.

In our most recent exercise we approached all clients who had purchased a report from us in the last year for their input. We managed to speak to 30 and asked them a range of questions including how they scored our reports, from 1-5, for quality and value for money. The charts show the scores we received with the overwhelming majority scoring us either 4 or 5 out of 5 on both measures.

Apex Insight client feedback

While we are very pleased that these scores remained high, as they have been in previous years, we were also grateful for the input from those clients who identified areas where our reports can improve further. We are now working on incorporating these suggestions into our forthcoming reports.

We realise that it can be difficult for new clients to buy from a research provider for the first time. To give a degree of comfort, several clients have given us testimonials that they are happy for us to reproduce on our website. To provide more detail, here is a wider selection of client comments answering, in their own words, two questions: ‘How useful was the report to you?’ and ‘How does the Apex Insight report compare to those from other research providers?’

Names, companies and report titles have been witheld to preserve confidentiality.

‘How useful was the report to you?’

“It was invaluable because we came to the UK and wanted something to teach us how this market works here. And we needed to raise funding. Our investors needed a credible analysis of the market. Using your report we were able to get our funding: £2m” – New market entrant

“I feel Apex Insight reports are written by someone who is familiar with the market, that people in the marketplace are comfortable with what Apex writes, and the banks trust the numbers. I was comfortable presenting the information to our Board” – Corporate

“This is one of our strategic markets and we have many years of experience of it. We found the Apex Insight report very useful. All the areas we wanted were covered well, in particular the analysis of what is a complex value chain. It was more complete in this regard than other sources” – Corporate

“It is comprehensive and does what it says on the tin! A lot of it is based on publicly available information, but it would take me ages to put together if I did it. I think it is comprehensive” – Corporate

“We have been using the Apex Insight reports a lot over the last few months… comprehensive and provide key information, covering the market from different angles: the macro- economic view, market drivers, operating models and so on. There was information on how the numbers were calculated which gives confidence. Our new CEO came from outside this industry and he found the report useful” – Corporate

“It is really useful. The methodology is good: the logical path it takes you through from volume to value and product type. The graphs are good visuals, good comparisons of service offering, and the market trend part was also good” – Corporate

“It’s been useful. It’s the main report I use. I look at it 2-3 times a year. It gives us a bigger-picture view which we then can add to with the more detailed view we have of the market” – Corporate

“The report was very useful and gave good insights and was a good introduction to the sector. It was clear and easy to use. The forecasts were sensible and the industry experts quotes throughout were also good” – Strategy consulting firm

‘How does the Apex Insight report compare to those from other research providers?’

“It was the best report I read on this market… nobody questioned your figures” – Government

“As a company we buy a lot of different research. Overall, I think this Apex Insight one is the best I have seen. It is UK-specific, which is relevant for me, and it delivered everything I was looking for: sensible market figures and insights into competitors, their performance and their current contracts” – Corporate

“We commissioned someone to go out and see what is available on the market and were told that this report by Apex Insight was the best one.” – Public service body

“I have bought 3 or 4 reports from Apex Insight, and once I read them I knew this was the place to go and I don’t need to look elsewhere” – Investor

“It was the first time I had seen firm-ish statistics on our market as there isn’t a great deal out there. I have looked at quite a lot of other reports but they are not at this level. The Apex Insight one is ‘on the money’, it has granularity … I intend to buy the 2017 edition when it comes out.” – Corporate

“We have bought Apex Insight and another report because they cover different things…I would not say that one was better than the other. The Apex one is more of a market insight and the other one is more of a consumer insight” – Corporate

“It was well thought out, accurate and thorough. In the past we have used other sources, but the Apex Insight one is better” – Investor

“It gives a comprehensive overview of the market with good primary data, country-specific stats and breakdowns and detail on the leading players. The Apex Insight report gives recent data, ie figures from 2016, while many other reports give old stats from previous years. Also the Apex Insight one is a bit more granular and has more colour. It is all good, we are still using it” – Investment bank


Apex Insight provides commercial due diligence to support Banijay Zodiak merger

Prior to the merger, Banijay Group, based in Paris, operated across Europe, the US and Australasia, with a particular strength in non-scripted / reality shows.

The merger with Zodiak, also based in Paris and strong across Europe, adds a range of assets including a leading production capability in the UK and a global sales arm with a large library of 20,000 hours of content.

The new merged Banijay Group, which will have revenues of around $1bn, has attracted investment from Vivendi, the parent company of Canal Plus, which has taken a 26.2% stake, alongside existing shareholders, LOV Group and De Agostini.

To support the transaction and subsequent bank syndication exercise, Apex Insight produced an in-depth study of the historical development of, and prospects for, the TV production markets in Europe and the US and Banijay / Zodiak’s position within them. This commercial due diligence work revealed that market growth has speeded up in recent years as television industry innovation has continued and the economic outlook has improved, in particular in markets such as Spain which were impacted by the Eurozone crisis. Forecasts are for growth to continue with Europe in particular benefitting from a more positive outlook for TV advertising revenues.

Philippe Magnani, Principal at LOV Group, said:
“Apex Insight’s work provided a detailed account of how the European and US TV production markets have performed, an explanation of the factors which have driven the trends, and forecasts of how the market is expected to develop in future”


Apex Insight comment on the acquisition of the FT by Nikkei from Pearson

By Vincent Schuller

Last week, following intense deal discussions, Pearson sold the Financial Times group to the Japanese media group Nikkei. There was significant interest from other bidders like Axel Springer and commentators believe that the sale price exceeded Pearson’s expectations.

The acquisition of the FT was high profile, and is in line with increasing deal activity in the B2B media sector. The sector has seen a return to selective growth and there are a host of good quality assets around that are being looked at with interest by strategic buyers and increasingly private equity investors as well.

Trends in B2B media
The B2B media sector tends to be cyclical in nature, with spending decreasing sharply when the economy contracts, and recovering with the cycle, though with some lag. Within the sector however, some segments have done better than others. Business information is relatively robust, as are trade shows and academic journals. On the other hand, regional news, newspapers and paper directories have proven less so.

A number of trends are visible, changing the B2B media and especially the B2B information sector. These are providing opportunities for those that adapt their business models or improve how they deliver information and insights to customers:
– B2B media has transitioned from print to online, balancing changing user needs with a need to protect pricing and revenue models. This has seen clear winners and losers but many B2B media and information businesses have come through the transition
– There is a clear trend towards subscription-based revenue models, and this trend continues. Key drivers are a desire for financial predictability, customer retention levels and user expectations regarding content
– The way business users interact with information has changed and data is consumed both on a larger scale and more interactively, in a context of more readily available free information
– As the business world is more and more awash with data, and the value of data in itself is eroding, the value of insights from data is becoming more important. Answers, insights and workflow solutions rather than just data are becoming more important.

B2B media and information budgets among typical clients of the sector have not come back to the highs of a decade ago, but some sectors are seeing some real traction. The financial and health sectors for example seem to have found their taste for market, sector, economic and risk information again.

Increasing deal activity
With the selective return of growth in media and information spend; deal appetite is increasing at media groups like Thomson Reuters, Reed Elsevier, Bloomberg, Springer, Informa and others. This includes both disposing of non-core assets to willing buyers and boosting successful assets to increase share of wallet or geographical reach.

The FT transaction was an example of such a high profile deal showing that strategic buyers are willing to pay for quality B2B information businesses. Alongside the B2B information segment, the B2B events segment is seeing a similar increase in deal appetite.

Private equity firms have shown more limited interest in media deals than strategic buyers over recent years, but some too are now looking for good quality, scalable subscription based B2B media businesses.

Outlook for the sector
At a high level, some B2B media segments are likely to do better than others. Given underlying growth drivers in the end markets, and a continued need for data and insights, the financial and economic segments have a favourable outlook, as do the risk information and health segments.

At a more granular level though, providers that can create “currency” for the customer segments they serve (e.g. ratings, benchmarks), and providers of information critical to their customers’ workflow can be attractive. Getting the business model and the proposition right can make a business stand out in any of the B2B media segments.

Identifying attractive investment opportunities
Those B2B information providers that are able to deliver business information to professionals in innovative ways, integrating into user work-flow and allowing users to interact with the data should be well placed to capture a good share of spend. Those providers that achieve a subscription-based portfolio and meet real demand among their clients should do well.

Given that many quality assets are likely to be contested by media groups and financial investors alike, it is key for investors to understand the real value of a business. Commercial due diligence is a great means for buyers to understand whether a business can prosper in a market environment and competitive landscape. Apex Insight is well places to support both media groups and investors looking to acquire assets in the B2B media sector given the firm’s deep experience in the sector.