North American M&A value jumps by a quarter month-on-month

There were a total of 1,928 mergers and acquisitions (M&A) worth a combined USD 133,002 million targeting North American companies announced in August 2017, according to information collected by the leading M&A database Zephyr. Value for the same period advanced by almost a quarter from USD 107,728 million in July against a marginal 2 percent decline in volume from 1,974 deals. Year-on-year, volume was down 11 percent from 2,172, while value was up 2 percent from USD 130,761 million in August 2016.

Zephyr shows that all of August’s top 20 deals by value comprised US targets, with Sempra Energy’s acquisition of 60 percent of Energy Future Holdings for USD 18,800 million accounting for the month’s largest M&A deal by value. Acquirors from outside the region featured in the top 20 North American deals by value included Softbank and Fresenius Medical Care.

Deals within the gas, water and electricity sector quadrupled month-on-month from USD 8,028 million to USD 36,540 million, which accounted for 27 percent of North America’s total value of USD 133,002 million.

Lisa Wright, Zephyr director, commented, “It is refreshing to see a series of high-value deals being announced in a month typically viewed as a holiday season, especially as a couple of these were private equity investments. We will have to wait and see if this increased interest continues through to the end of the year.”

The Zephyr database shows that the value of PE and VC investment targeting companies based in North America almost doubled month-on-month to USD 39,704 million – representing the second-highest recorded for the 12 months under review and a 23 percent increase year-on-year (August 2016: USD 32,228 million).

The overall improvement can be attributed to an increase in the value of PE and VC investment in US companies, which rose to USD 39,595 million in August from USD 21,041 million in July.