The Birmingham office of international accountants Mazars is forecasting a stream of M&A deals despite the uncertainty associated with a General Election.
It follows a very active 2014 with the international accountancy firm’s Central Region team, covering the Birmingham, Nottingham, Leicester and Milton Keynes offices, working on over 30 completed transactions supporting SMEs, international corporates, and listed companies across a range of sectors in the £3 million to £50 million range.
Corporate finance partner Nick Johnson said: “Despite a degree of macro economic uncertainty, and the upcoming election, we are confident that this will be another exciting year for deals.
“We have seen views developing within the business community for some time now – whether it’s selling, acquiring or investing. There has been a sea change in attitudes, with people recognising that there is no time like the present.
“So the outlook is very positive – our pipeline of deals remains strong and continues to build. Our business will grow further in 2015, and we expect to see more of every type of deal including some interesting buyout opportunities.”
Recent disposals completed by the team include the sale of a software business to Sanderson plc, the sale of an online consumer business to private buyers and the sale of a leading provider of marketing fulfilment services to a division of international outsourcing group Bunzl plc.
Fundraising has also been a feature – the team completed the raising of around £8 million for IT services business APSU from Business Growth Fund, a bank funded sale to management, and an equity and bank fundraising. The pipeline is also promising in this area with several buyouts and buy-ins expected in the near future.
2015 kicked off with the £23 million sale of Life Marketing Consultancy Ltd to multi-channel marketing firm Communisis plc. Mazars provided comprehensive corporate finance advice to the shareholders of Life.
Principal vendor David Poole commented: “If there’s one thing the last seven months have taught us, it’s the turbulent waters of M&A need careful and experienced navigation – that’s why we chose to work with Mazars.
“Nick and his team helped with every aspect of the acquisition process, but beyond technical aspects, the extended negotiation and the myriad work streams, it was the human element that Nick managed so well.
“His deep understanding of what both sides are going through, particularly at the sticky key stages, was critical to a successful outcome for us and Communisis.”