UK M&As Fall During 2010, Finds Experian

Experian, an information services company, has found that the number of UK mergers and acquisitions (M&As) during 4Q10 fell by 20.6% compared to 4Q09, bringing the volume of deals for the whole of 2010 to 4,240 – 4.5% fewer than the total number of deals in 2009.

Experian’s latest M&A and equity capital market (ECM) data has also revealed that the value of deals during 4Q10 fell – down 17.7% compared to 4Q09. The total value of deals for the year saw a decline of 16.8% compared to 2009.

UK Highlights

  • During 4Q10, the UK saw a 12.5% decrease in the number of UK M&A and ECM transactions announced, compared to 3Q10 (from 1,050 deals to 919 deals), and an 18.4% fall on the value of transactions to £52.9bn.
  • Compared to 4Q09, the UK saw a 20.6% fall in volume, from 1,158 and a 17.7% fall in value, from £64.3bn.
  • The most improved region in the UK was East Anglia with a percentage increase of 31.4% in deals since last quarter.
  • The worst performing region was Wales where deal activity dropped by 44.1%.

Europe and the Rest of the World

  • Europe saw a 20.0% decrease in European M&A and ECM transactions announced during 4Q10 with only 2,103 deals compared to 2,629 transactions in 3Q10 and a 11.4% fall on the €208.4bn recorded in 3Q10 to €184.6bn worth of transactions announced in Europe in 4Q10.
  • Compared to 4Q09, Europe saw the volume of deals fall by 28.3% from 2,932 to 2,103 deals. The value of deals fell from €232.5bn in 4Q09 to €184.6bn – down 20.6%.
  • The majority of the UK’s deals during 4Q10 were with the US, followed by Australia.
  • For 2010 as a whole, Europe’s deal volumes saw a 6.7% decline, while deal values dropped by 10.7% compared to 2009.
  • The final year results for the US revealed a decrease in volume of 2.7% and an increase in value of 1.4% when comparing the figures with 2009.
  • Asia fared much better with a 6.9% increase in volume for 2010 as a whole, and a significant 15.6% increase in value over the same time frame.

Wendy Smith, business development manager at Experian Corpfin, said: “While overall deal volumes have decreased in 4Q10 and year-on-year from 2009, the overall trend since 3Q08 has been relatively flat. It remains to be seen if deal volumes have found a new level at which they will remain or whether the decline will continue or indeed whether we will see an upturn in 2011.”


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