Merger & Acquisition Trends

07 Apr, 2020

During 2019, global merger and acquisition (M&A) activity declined compared to previous years, both in terms of deal value and deal count. Total deal value in the Nordic region declined significantly more than in the rest of Europe.

Although the current macroeconomic environment is generally unfavorable, some trends positively impact M&A activity. In the automotive industry for instance, emerging technologies are driving mergers to create enterprises with enough resources to cope with expected future customer demands. In the energy industry, falling oil prices and increasing investor pressure to prioritize sustainability are driving a wave of divestments in non-core assets. This was a key factor in the largest Nordic M&A deal in 2019.

Triathlon notes that the decline in M&A activity during 2019 was driven by an increasing uncertainty in the macroeconomic environment, most notably the China-US trade war and Brexit. The Coronavirus pandemic is rapidly increasing macroeconomic uncertainty even further, and as a result global M&A activity fell sharply during the first quarter of 2020.

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