Reflecting on 2017, there are some key themes that have directed and influenced our transactional activity and these are as follows:
Strong appetite to invest in the UK from Europe, the US and the Far East
A significant proportion of the companies we have sold, or undertaken due diligence on, have been bought by overseas acquirers. Whilst sterling’s depreciation since the Brexit vote has positively influenced this, it is not the only reason. The swirl of M&A activity has become increasingly global over the last few years and the UK is seen by many as an attractive investment opportunity and, relative to opportunities elsewhere, safe and secure.
Continued growth of private equity
The private equity market continues to expand as a prolonged low interest rate / low inflationary environment has encouraged a larger and greater variety of investors to move up the risk curve in search of investment returns. Existing PE houses have had great success in raising new and larger funds and this has been complemented by family offices putting more money aside for direct equity investment.
Good interest in domestic transactions
Interest in acquisitions has not just been restricted to overseas acquirers and private equity. Seemingly unperturbed by Brexit uncertainties, UK corporates continue to seek growth opportunities on home territory. However, sterling weakness, whilst giving a welcome fillip to UK exporters, is starting to become a scourge for importers.
We hope you find the document of interest and would be delighted to help you in 2018.