Ciesco, a specialist M&A advisory firm operating in the technology, digital, media and marketing sectors, has reported positive M&A activity in Q1 2022 despite geopolitical turmoil.
Cisco’s latest report reveals 500 transactions announced in Q1 2022 in the sector – a 17 per cent increase in year-to-date activity from Q1 2021, with deal activity spiking 48 per cent in January.
Ciesco’s research found Digital Agency, MarTech and Digital Media were the sectors showing the highest deal volume with 86, 67 and 64 deals respectively. Digital Agency was found to be one of the most successful sectors for M&A deals, returning a 72 per cent increase in deal activity from 2021. Private Equity was the most active buyer in the M&A sector, representing 40 per cent of all transactions recorded.
Ciesco identified the US as being the largest market for deal activity (48 per cent) followed by Western Europe (23 per cent), and the UK (13 per cent). Blackstone and Deloitte remain active buyers in the report with five and four Q1 acquisitions respectively. Bpifrance, STG Partners, The Carlyle Group, Together Group Holdings and Vista Equity Partners each announced three transactions. The top the value deals noted by Ciesco were:
Nielsen being acquired for USD16 billion by private equity consortium led by Evergreen Coast Capital Corp, an affiliate of Elliott Investment Management and Brookfield Business Partners;
Private Equity firm Veritas Capita’s USD2.8 billion acquisition of learning and traditional media company, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt;
Chatham Asset Management’s USD2.3 billion acquisition of multichannel marketing communications company RR Donnelley & Sons;
Content and data company Mobile Streams’ USD1.1 billion acquisition of cloud-based data tool company, Krunch.
Ciesco warns on increasing interest rates in response to global inflationary pressures which may impact how deals are funded in future months. However, data reveals that, globally, Private Equity firms are sitting on approximately USD1.6 trillion of dry powder which urgently needs to be invested.