DACH dealmakers seem to have weathered the coronavirus pandemic better than their European neighbors, thanks in part to the robust government response, strong pre-pandemic activity, and resilience from midcap buyout groups and international buyers. While M&A activity took a significant hit after lockdown measures were implemented, Mergermarket data shows that the German-speaking region reached the end of the first half of 2020 better off than the rest of the continent.
A total of EUR 67.6 bn changed hands via M&A involving targets in Germany, Austria and Switzerland in the first half of this year, 12.2% less than a year ago – a smaller drop than the 29% decrease seen across Europe in the same period. In volume terms, the number of transactions was down 28.1% to 454, compared to a 36.9% fall in the continent, according to Mergermarket data.
Second quarter numbers, which saw value drop to a historic low as lockdowns were enforced, were ultimately made more palatable by deal activity generated by DACH mid-cap buyout groups, which have proven to be more resilient than European counterparts during this crisis. Clairfield partner Dirk Middelhoff noted that “With private equity investors creating special COVID-19 investment structures and other capital solutions at hand we can expect to see a still active buy-side and buy-and-build market.”
Read more in the Mergermarket Trendspotter.