U.S. Companies Dominate Global Deal-Making

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

American corporations and their financial advisers are feeling confident and hungry for mergers and major deals, after years of little appetite for such risk taking across the globe.

 

The second half of last year witnessed a surprising uptick in deal-making in the U.S., which experienced an 11% increase over activity in 2012. This followed four consecutive years of relatively no growth internationally for major business deals.

 

The U.S. accounted for 43% of all deals worldwide, the biggest proportion since 2001.

 

In terms of money exchanged, U.S. deals during 2013 were worth more than $1 trillion, the largest amount since the financial crisis. Much of this activity occurred in the second half of last year.

 

“There’s a feeling of a more stable backdrop that executives think will be with us for the foreseeable quarters,” Blair W. Effron, cofounder of Centerview Partners, an independent investment bank, told The New York Times. “I didn’t have a sense of that at the end of 2012 or 2011.”

 

Some the highlights from 2013 included the $23 billion deal between H. J. Heinz and 3G Capital, and Berkshire Hathaway/General Electric selling the remainder of NBCUniversal to Comcast for $16.7 billion.

 

Some of Wall Street’s biggest banks helped advise these deals, earning them billion- dollar paydays. Goldman Sachs made $1.5 billion and JPMorgan Chase $1.3 billion in fees for their advisory work on 395 and 295 deals respectively.

-Noel Brinkerhoff

 

To Learn More:

Markets Buoyant, Merger Activity Picks Up (by David Gelles, New York Times)

Plotting Strategic Deals (New York Times)

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