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UK M&A activity at GBP37.5bn in first half of 2014

M&A activity targeting the UK stood at GBP37.5bn in the first half of 2014, representing the lowest half-year value since H1 2010 (GBP37bn) and a 12.5 per cent drop from H1 2013 (GBP42.9bn), according to MergerMarket.

Only one mega-deal (valued above USD5bn) has been announced in the region so far this year – the GBP8.6bn acquisition of the Oncology division of GlaxoSmithKline by its German peer Novartis.
 
The lack of large transactions in the country pulled the UK M&A value down this semester.
 
However, the second quarter of 2014 witnessed a stark improvement compared to the previous quarter (up 156.5 per cent, from GBP10.5bn to GBP27bn) and represented the highest quarterly value in the country since Q2 2012.
 
The pharma, medical & biotech (PMB) sector, driven by the Novartis/GlaxoSmithKline deal, was the most active industry with a 26.9 per cent market share (GBP10.1bn), and is in line with PMB leading global M&A with a 16.5 per cent market share. The proportion of PMB M&A in the UK and globally would have been even larger if the GBP69bn proposed acquisition of AstraZeneca by Pfizer went through.

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