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    The UK M&A market is strong at present, according to ONS

    The most recent “Mergers and acquisitions involving UK companies” release from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), published in early September, paints a positive picture of M&A in the UK. The release, which is published each quarter, takes into account all UK deals which result in a change of ultimate control of the target company, acquired for a value of £1m or more.

    According to the ONS, the UK M&A market has confirmed its strength this year, with the overall value of successful completions having risen significantly each quarter.

    During the second quarter of 2017, the ONS reports that over £30bn was generated by domestic and cross-border acquisitions and disposals involving UK businesses. This figure represents an increase of 82% on the values witnessed during the first quarter and 114% on the values witnessed during the same period of 2016.

    The ONS also reports that the second quarter of this year saw 120% more completions involving UK companies and overseas buyers than those witnessed during the same period of 2016. Zephyr, the company deals database, notes that the most valuable deal completed during the second quarter of 2017 was Lloyds Banking Group’s £1.9bn acquisition of credit card provider, MBNA.

    Here at KBS Corporate, we also experienced a particularly active second quarter. We completed significantly more deals during the second quarter of 2017 than during the same period of 2016, including the notable acquisitions of Academic Appointments Limited by Solingen Private Equity Limited (SPEL), Bright & Beautiful UK Limited by The Dwyer Group, Inc., and Olympic Fixing Products Limited by PHD Equity Partners.

    KBS Corporate has continued to experience further success throughout the third quarter of the year, with many completed deals involving noteworthy trade buyers and private equity investors, including Elanders UK and Second Chance Holdings Limited.

    According to Zephyr, the UK M&A market is set to play host to many more rumoured deals with extremely high values (including Korea Electric Power Corporation’s rumoured £15bn acquisition of NuGen), and as a result, we can fully expect aggregate values in the next few months to remain high, and perhaps even surpass those witnessed previously.

    You can view the latest ONS release here.

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