Unquote” interviews Jim Keeling of Corbett Keeling Corporate Finance and Gary Edwards of Investec Growth & Acquisition Finance about expectations for 2013.
While last year saw most of Europe's deal numbers decline, the UK stood out, exceeding 2011's €16bn with a robust €26bn clocked up for last year.
"The euro has to be a big factor in this," says Jim Keeling of Corbett Keeling Corporate Finance. "Our difficulties are nothing compared to the eurozone countries."
Vendors, long deemed to be persistently hanging on to outdated price expectations, seem to be meeting private equity now. Firstly, Keeling points out that time has elapsed, allowing vendors to accept the new backdrop. Investec Growth & Acquisition Finance's Gary Edwards suggests private equity houses are upping their offers, too: "Sponsors are finding areas where they can really add value and therefore meet vendors' price expectations. We've seen tremendous growth here."
And banks are back in the game. Says Keeling, "There is plenty of debt available at the moment. We can now go to the spectrum of banks and get interest even in some relatively small deals – I don't see any lack of interest at the moment. Even those who were said to have shut doors a year ago are back now." Statistics from unquote" data reveal all-equity buyouts at an all-time low across the last five years, indicating that most deals nowadays contain an element of debt.
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