A worrisome M&A signal from January

BVWire–UKIssue #36-1
March 1, 2022

Everyone from the FT on down has reported on the exuberant UK M&A market for 2021. So, while not wishing to rain on the proverbial control premium parade, it’s worth noting that FactSet has reported a significant downturn in activity for January.

The February issue of the FactSet Mergerstat Monthly Review is now available to download. Highlights of the report include:

  • M&A activity fell 19% in January;
  • The sectors with the biggest increase in M&A activity over the past three months were technology services, commercial services, and distribution services;
  • The sectors with the largest declines in M&A activity over the past three months were finance, utilities, and electronic technology; and
  • The biggest global deals announced in January are:
    • Microsoft Corp. agreeing to acquire Activision Blizzard Inc. for $US 74 billion;
    • A private group led by Vista Equity Partners Management LLC and Evergreen Coast Capital Corp. entering into an agreement to acquire the remaining 88% stake in Citrix Systems Inc. for $US 11.4 billion; and
    • Take-Two Interactive Software Inc.’s deal to acquire Zynga Inc. for $US 11.1 billion; Acacia Research Corp. and Starboard Value LP’s proposal to acquire Kohl’s Corp. for $US 8.9 billion.
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