Chris Silver Smith offers a provocative post that argues there’s an impending merger afoot between one or more of the traditional YP publishers: SuperMedia and Dex and maybe AT&T.
There are people who argued to me that a SuperMedia and Dex/RHD merger could and maybe should have happened during the bankruptcy of both companies a year ago; but it obviously did not. Chris supports his theory with a series of arguments that I won’t reproduce. However, among them, he cites increased cooperation and distribution deals among the companies, market and general competitive conditions and “whispers” he’s heard, as evidence that something’s in the works.
I have not heard anything similar myself but Chris has contacts that I do not. I will acknowledge that there is a certain logic to a merger to create more scale here. There’s also increasing pressure on the traditional side of the business where most of the revenue still resides. Many people would potentially lose jobs if that were to happen of course as redundancies and headcount were eliminated.
There was also a rumor that Yellowbook might be for sale. I’ve heard nothing more about this since it surfaced however.
If any of this is true we could wind up at the end of 2011 with a very different YP publisher landscape than we have now. I don’t think there would be anti-trust issues because of the competition posed by the Internet and the many companies now vying for SMB ad dollars.
Do you think there’s any merit to these merger rumors? Does it make sense for these companies to combine?