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Strong first quarter for cross-border M&A

Up-to-date figures have revealed that domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions (M&A) involving UK companies accelerated significantly in the first quarter (Q1) of 2018.

According to the data, the overall value of UK M&A deals hit $120 billion (£84.5 billion) in the first three months of the year – the highest value on record since the first quarter of 2007.

During the same period, 681 deals were agreed, up from just 586 deals agreed in the final quarter (Q4) of 2017.

The report’s authors have been keen to note that both domestic and outbound M&A enjoyed ‘significant increases’ quarter-on-quarter, particularly in the healthcare, telecommunications and automobile sectors.

The news comes at a time when separate research suggests that M&A on a global scale continues to perform well.

According to the research, which was carried out by media and research organisation Mergermarket, there was an “extraordinary surge in dealmaking at the end of 2017” which appears to have “carried through into 2018.”

Mergermarket’s research reveals that 3,774 global deals were agreed in Q1 2018, with a total value of some £632.8 billion.

Jonathan Klonowksi, of Mergermarket, said: “Global private equity activity remains remarkably high, with many investors pursuing larger targets as the mid-market becomes saturated.

“Global M&A hit its highest first quarter value on record as pressure from investors and the search for innovation continues to push corporates towards M&A.”

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ELS Legal is an international law firm based in London with more than 50 partner offices across the world. As part of the Cathay Associates global legal network, we are the first choice law firm for a number of British businesses and overseas clients.

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