At the Crossroads: Exploring M&A in 2019 and Beyond

18 November 2019

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Mergermarket is pleased to present At the Crossroads: Exploring M&A in 2019 and Beyond, published in association with Squire Patton Boggs. The report features global M&A data for 2019 to the third quarter, analysed by region and sector, underscored with insights into what is driving corporates and private equity houses to seek out transactions and where they see most opportunity.

Key highlights include:

  • After a decade-long bull run, M&A markets look to be finally cooling down. In the first three quarters this year, there have been 13,337 M&A deals globally, totalling US$2.4 trillion – a 15% drop in volume and a 14% drop in value compared to 2018. However, 2019 is still one of the highest-performing years thus far for M&A, and total value in the first three quarters is higher than the US$2.2 trillion recorded in the first three quarters of both 2017 and 2016.
  • There is a greater concentration on large-cap deals with the PMB sector leading the way. Of the 50 largest transactions made so far this decade, eight took place in 2019. The largest of these deals was the largest pharmaceutical acquisition in history: Bristol-Myers Squibb’s purchase of biotech company Celgene for US$89.5bn (inclusive of net debt).
  • While PE activity has moderated, there is heightened pressure on private equity firms to deploy the US$1.2 trillion in dry powder that has already been accumulated. PE value has fallen 19% year on year to US$633.5bn in the first three quarters in 2019 and volume dropped 15% to 3,627 deals. However, as well as having record levels of capital at their disposal, easy financing means that PE houses should have the necessary means to transact.