Incisive Media Still Strong Despite Global Ad Spend Drop

Despite stories to the contrary, Incisive Media has come out of its recent debt problems and is looking stronger and ready to become more so, company founder and CEO Tim Weller told paidContent UK this week.

Weller discussed the debt for equity swap that has 18 banks now investing in the company, as well as his enthusiasm for the future, though warned that the online ad spend drop is likely to continue a little longer.

"Forget the cautious optimism we've heard from the like of Sir Martin Sorrell of late: "Anyone who thinks 2010 is going to be better than 2009 is kidding themselves and has probably still got their head in the sand," says Weller. Media businesses should plan to experience the same volatility and slowed growth of the last nine months for the next 15, though on a bright-ish note he adds that "at least we know where we are", Weller told paidContent.

On the bright side, Incisive Media has been cutting non-profitable publications and is in a strong position.

""We don't have loss-making assets in the business. Whilst we've had too much debt, the business is still very profitable," he says. Incisive isn't ditching its magazines--a subscription to Risk is almost £1,000 a year and is now printed in seven languages--but he accepts that mags have to be more analytical these days," paid Content reported he said.

On the search front, ClickZ and Search Engine Watch are moving stongly forward and new senior VP Michael Grehan started this week. While the SES conferences are also moving ahead - with agreements for the San Jose event to be moved to San Francisco next year and the established events in the United States and Europe to continue, with some interesting new additions to be announced in the near future.

About the author

Frank Watson has been involved with the Web since it started. For the past five years, he headed SEM for FXCM -- at one time one of the top 25 spenders with AdWords. He has worked with most of the major analytics companies and pioneered the ability to tie online marketing with offline conversion.

He has now started his own marketing agency, Kangamurra Media. This new venture will keep him busy when he is not editing the Search Engine Watch forums, blogging at a number of authoritative sites, and developing some interesting online community sites.

He was one of the first 100 AdWords Professionals, a Yahoo and Overture Ambassador, and a member or mod of many of the industry forums. He is also on the Click Quality Council and has worked hard to diminish click fraud.