Insights & News

Sub-£30m deals surge ahead of General Election

INSIGHT: View all Insights articles.

A recent report which suggests that M&A activity is declining ahead of the UK’s General Election, has been challenged by international M&A advisor BCMS, which specialises in the sale of privately owned businesses / SMEs.

According to research published by Experian1, the total number of deals completed in Q1 2015 was down by 20% when compared with Q1 2014, which suggests investors may be holding off on M&A activity ahead of the General Election.

However recent figures published by Thomson Reuters suggest there has been a significant increase in the number of completed deals with a transaction value of up to £30m in the UK. BCMS researchers reviewing the Thomson Reuters2 UK data point to a reported 486 completed deals in Q1 2015, compared to 452 completed deals reported in Q1 2014.

The Thomson Reuters figures mirror BCMS’ own experience of deal making in the first three months of 2015, as the international advisory experienced its most successful quarter of deal making. The advisory also broke its previous record for the most companies sold in a single month, completing 14 company sales in March 2015 across its global group of companies.

A selection of deals completed by BCMS in Q1 2015, include:

  • Food sector: Rainbow Dust Colours Ltd, a leading manufacturer of glitters and coloured edibles for the cake decorating and baking industry, acquired by Real Good Food plc for in excess of £7m. The acquirer, a diversified food group listed on AIM
  • Commercial sciences sector: Biological Preparations Ltd acquired by Cleveland Biotech, as part of a £10.4m investment made by NVM Private Equity, to create a new innovative business providing eco-friendly biological cleaning and waste treatment solutions 
  • Medical sector: Specialised Orthotic Services Limited (SOS), an assistive technology company, has been acquired by Drive Medical Limited, the UK arm of one of the world’s fastest growing major manufacturers and distributors of durable medical equipment in the home healthcare, medical/surgical and rehabilitation markets 
  • Transport sector: TEW Engineering Ltd, a provider of application engineering solutions in the automotive, power generation and food and beverage manufacturing sector has been acquired by L.B. Foster Inc., a leading manufacturer, fabricator and distributor of products and services for the rail, construction, energy and utility markets with locations in North America, Europe and Asia 
  • Subsea engineering sector: Subtech Group, a leading salvage and underwater construction expert along the sub-Saharan coast, was purchased by James Fisher & Sons PLC in a transaction valued at up to £18m 

1. Experian Deal Review and League Tables Q1 2015
2. Thomson Reuters Small Cap M&A Review Financial Advisors Q1 2015

BCMS Author's picture
Posted May 2015
All BCMS Insights