The US and Europe were bright spots on the M&A landscape, while Asia Pacific experienced a slump
Worldwide, M&A deals value reached US$777.7bn, up 12% year-on-year, while deal volume was 10,433, down 9% compared to the first quarter of 2016. Companies were making bigger deals, with 138 deals at more than US$1bn in value, a 26% increase on the year, for a total value of US$501.1bn, up 19% compared to the same quarter last year. However, compared to the fourth quarter of 2016, deals value fell 39% from US$1.3trn, the lowest quarterly total for worldwide deals in 12 months.
Cross-border M&A reached a 10-year high off the back of strong outbound activity in the US and inbound activity in Europe. Cross-border activity totalled US$337.1bn, accounting for 43% of worldwide deals volume. On the other end of the spectrum, China outbound M&A dropped 70% on the year to US$25.8bn.
Announced deals with European targets totalled US$225bn, up 29% YoY, while APAC deals fell 14% on the year to US$163.2bn. According to Thomson Reuters, European targets accounted for 29% of worldwide M&A, a three-year high.
In terms of sectors, the energy and power, materials, and healthcare industries were the biggest in the quarter, despite materials M&A dipping 2% by value and 9% by number of deals. The energy and power sector was up 62% YoY, while healthcare M&A jumped 61%. The industrials industry lost the most, down 48% YoY and 24% QoQ.
The top 10 firms worldwide in terms of announced deals are:
- Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (US$102.49bn)
- Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (US$$83.72bn)
- Kirkland & Ellis (US$68.02bn)
- Cravath, Swaine & Moore (US$62.81bn)
- Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher (US$53.31bn)
- Slaughter & May (US$53.04bn)
- Simpson Thacher & Bartlett (US$50.08bn)
- Sullivan & Cromwell (US$48.7bn)
- Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz (US$48.36bn)
- Jones Day (US$47.62bn)
- Sullivan & Cromwell (US$125.97bn)
- White & Case (US$118.8bn)
- Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz (US$114.95bn)
- Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (US$$102.06bn)
- Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (US$88.92bn)
- Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (US$78.7bn)
- Davis Polk & Wardwell (US$76.13bn)
- Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher (US$60bn)
- O’Melveny & Myers (US$52.86bn)
- Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati (US$50.78bn)
Australasian M&A drops in first quarter
Law firm expects growth in FinTech M&A