The Thomson Corporation is certainly busy on the M&A front these days. First they sell Profound, a product of the Thomson Business Inteligence unit that Thomson West plans to eliminate, to MarketResearch.com, which turns out to be small potatoes in the whole “deal” scheme of things. Next it sells Thomson Learning, a move it pre-announced its intent to do, to Apax and OMER. That looked like bigger potatoes at $7.75billion. But now the news of Thomson acquiring Reuters makes even that number look small. Try in the neighborhood of $17.2 billion.
The new company will be headed by Reuters CEO Tom Glocer. The piece that is now Thomson Financial will combine with Reuters and be renamed Reuters. That will certainly give Bloomberg and Dow Jones something to think about. The rest of Thomson (the part with tax, scientific, legal, and healthcare that sells Dialog, DataStar, Westlaw, Web of Science and other databased products to librarians) will become Thomson Reuters Professional. With luck, and I mean a lot of luck, the products vital to information professionals will be resuscitated and not allowed to wither on the vine, as some have been doing over the past few years. I wish I were more optimistic that this would happen. “Our” products are such a small piece of the overall product mix that we are the really small potatoes in this deal. We need to make sure we’re not the potatoes smashed in this merger process.