Number of UK M&A deals at highest level since pre-recession

Mergers and acquisitions involving British companies has exceeded £260bn to the year to date with Japanese firms having spent $11bn

The value of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) involving British firms this year has exceeded £260bn despite ongoing volatility in global markets, according to data from Dealogic.

Now standing at its highest level since 2007, M&A deals involving UK businesses – both as target and acquirer – have totaled £262bn this year to date.

Yesterday saw a number of significant deals with Paddy Power and Betfair agreeing a £6bn merger, Cinven announcing the sale of UK-based AMCo for £2.3bn and Japanese bank Mitsui Sumitomo acquiring British insurer Amlin for £3.47bn.

Japanese companies have spent a record high of $11bn on 25 British businesses this year, including Nikkei’s takeover of the Financial Times newspaper group last month.

However, the story wasn’t just a British one with global M&A deals reaching $3.2 trillion yesterday – edging closer to its $3.4 trillion peak in 2007.

Peter Gray of Cavendish Corporate Finance, commented: “Cash-rich Japanese companies have clearly opted for mergers and acquisitions as a response to a slowed domestic market with limited growth opportunities.”

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