The latest quarterly M&A statistics by the ONS reveal that mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in the UK in Q3 (July to September) 2023, which involved inward, outward and domestic activity, was down on the previous quarter.
But the leading audit, tax and consulting firm RSM UK believes an impending general election next year is likely to stimulate activity as sellers look to get deals over the line from Q2 2024 and so get ahead of any changes in capital gains tax that may follow if a new government is formed.
The total combined number of cross-border and domestic M&A transactions involving a change in majority share ownership was 362 during the three months of Q3, a decrease from 479 the previous quarter. The value of domestic M&A (UK companies acquiring other UK companies) was £2.6bn in Q3 2023, £0.2bn lower than the previous quarter, but £0.1bn higher than Q3 2022.
The value of inward M&A (foreign companies acquiring UK companies) in Q3 2023 was £5.4bn, £0.7bn higher than the previous quarter, but significantly lower than Q3 2022 (£22.4bn). The total value of outward M&A (UK companies acquiring foreign companies) in Q3 2023 was £2.2bn, £0.2bn higher than in Q2 2023 but £6.1bn lower than Q3 2022.