Press releases

Global M&A deal volumes down but transaction multiples remain robust

21 August 2019

  • By volume, global dealmaking fell by 18% from 18,443 deals in the second half of 2018, to 15,076 in H1 2019;
  • 216 M&A deals were recorded between the US and UK in H1 2019, down 20% on the previous year, according to Deloitte;
  • Technology assets account for over a quarter of US-UK M&A deals.

Global deal volumes fell by 18% from 18,443 in the second half of 2018, to 15,076 in the first half of this year according to new research into global M&A activity by Deloitte.

Meanwhile transaction multiples remain strong, with increasing competition for quality assets, and mega-mergers driving over £50 billion of UK transactions announced during July alone.

Fenton Burgin, head of UK Advisory Corporate Finance at Deloitte said: “While there has undoubtedly been a fall in deal volumes at the higher end of the market, the mid-market is holding up well, fuelled by private equity’s reported US $2 trillion of global ‘dry powder’. There are notable bright spots in the technology, healthcare and consumer sectors, demonstrating competitive pricing for quality assets. Corporates are focusing on key strategic assets in the context of the ‘synchronised slowdown’ and increasing uncertainty around trade tariffs and the global economy.”

Transatlantic M&A activity between the US-UK has seen a decrease of 20% by volume, but the 216 deals in H1 2019 between the US and UK still represented more than the combined total number of the deals between the US and Germany, France and Spain.

Paul Lupton, UK lead US-UK M&A corridor comments: “Transatlantic deal volumes have fallen across many of the major European markets in 2019. However, there is still a strong appetite for technology assets in cross border transactions, accounting for over a quarter (28%) of US-UK deals in H1 2019. This is attributable to the asset light business models which enable greater potential for geographical expansion and scalability.”


Note to editors
The data used in the US-UK and Europe M&A deal monitor is based on Deloitte analysis of deal volumes and values as recorded by Thomson One from Refinitiv as of August 2019. This report analyses deals completed between January 2016 and June 2019, inclusive.

Where referenced, deal value calculations are based on M&A deals for which value is disclosed – values were not disclosed for over two thirds of the analysed deals, with significant volatility driven primarily by individual high value deals. Thus it is the authors’ view that deal volumes provide the more reliable and meaningful indicator of overall trends in the M&A market, and this forms the basis of our analysis.

About Deloitte
In this press release references to “Deloitte” are references to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”) a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity.

Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of DTTL and its member firms.

Deloitte LLP is a subsidiary of Deloitte NSE LLP, which is a member firm of DTTL, and is among the UK's leading professional services firms.

The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

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