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UK mergers and acquisitions update – June 2021

UK mergers and acquisitions update – June 2021

Tuesday, 10 August 2021

The number of UK businesses sold in June 2021 was 378, an increase of 44% on the recorded June 2020 figures. Excluding the disrupted period during 2020, the UK has historically recorded on average 350 transactions per month. June 2021’s volume suggests that mergers and acquisitions market activity is firmly back to pre-COVID levels.

UK merger and acquisitions volumes (Source: MarktoMarket)

The headlines

The biggest headline of the month is the ongoing bidding war for supermarket giant Morrisons. The Fortress Investment Group may be the new front runners but expect another twist in this saga before any deal gets across the line. When it comes to completed deals in the month, Energy and Utilities, IT, and Manufacturing sectors were the most in demand.

East Anglian view

Focusing on the east, business activity remains high. Businesses across all sectors are successfully undergoing transactions with strong buyer appetite for the right businesses. Increased regional business confidence has been a key trigger to growing demand, along with substantial outside investment from London and beyond as businesses and investors look to diversify. The draw for “country” life, which has seen house prices boom in the region, has had a similar effect on business demand.

Larking Gowen’s Corporate Transactions team remain busy, with numerous active business disposals in progress. The Acquisition Watching Brief, our list of active buyers in the area, continues to grow and demand is high for the right business in almost every sector.

Expectations

Late July into August is typically a slow period for transactions with a lot of business stop-start throughout the holiday months. The general feel across the advisor network is that activity and demand remain abnormally high for this time of year, perhaps triggered by reduced holidays due to lack of foreign travel, so expect deal volumes to be a little higher than anticipated. 

If you are considering your exit options, actively looking for a business to acquire or just want to find out more about the merger and acquisitions market for your industry and area you can get in touch with your usual Larking Gowen contact. Or contact Will Gibbs, Corporate Transactions Executive, direct via email will.gibbs@larking-gowen.co.uk.

Data provided by MarktoMarket – UK M&A data and analytics platform. All data is reported in the subsequent months when readily available.

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