Strong deal flow
Grant Thornton reports ‘positive momentum’
Director of Corporate Finance, Neil McInnes, said the team had a “tremendous” 2017 on both buy and sell-side.
“I’m confident that this positive momentum will be sustained during 2018,” he said, adding that the firm has a strong pipeline of entrepreneurial clients looking for a partner, either a private equity firm or a trade player, to help them take their business to the next level.
Throughout the UK, Grant Thornton’s corporate finance team was involved in 179 transactions last year with a total transaction value of £5.5 billion. The average transaction had a value of £31m.
Of these transactions, over a quarter (26%) were cross-border deals, highlighting the continued interest from international firms in gaining a foothold in the UK and the continued drive to develop international markets.
One third (33%) of transactions involved private equity (PE) backing – an increase of 28% on the previous year – demonstrating the continued resilience of the PE market and the significant level of ‘dry powder’ for investment.
In Scotland, a number of deals have already completed in 2018, including the sale of specialist mounted access platform hire company Outreach Access, to Business Growth Fund-backed High Access Maintenance Group, and the acquisition by energy research, analysis and consulting specialist for exploration and oilfield services markets, Westwood Global Energy, of RigLogix from DHI Group.
Mr McInnes added: “Valuations remain strong, and the level of liquidity in equity, debt and public markets and the continued appetite of international corporates for quality UK assets provides a strong underpin for deal activity into 2018.
“Our combination of deep sector expertise, local relationships, international reach and a joined up proposition across all aspects of the deal is really resonating in the market. We are beginning 2018 on a very strong footing and are well positioned for further growth this year.”