The Africa and Middle East regions saw a 6.9 per cent surge in the first quarter of 2015 at 7.7billion US dollars compared to the first quarter of 2014 which was 7.2 billion US dollars-worth of deals.
(READ MORE: M&A activity in Africa on the rise)
According to the Merger Market report, private equity exits peaked by deal count and reached a post-crisis high in 2014, with the first quarter of 2015 having continued at the same pace with a quarterly record number at 12 exits valued at 1.2 billion US dollars, up 9.4 per cent by value.
“There was a pickup in the Energy, Mining & Utilities sector after a sharp fall in 2014 with 14 deals worth 2.8 billion US dollars increasing 67.7 per cent by value,” read part of the report.
“The majority were domestic but inbound deals increased. Total inbound activity increased 39.5 per cent from Q1 2014. The majority came from European companies (64.9 per cent) with 2.8 billion US dollars -worth of deals jumping over three times higher than Q1 2014 (928 million US dollars).”
The 27 outbound deals represented the lowest number of announcements in any quarter since Q4 2011 with total deal values at 8.5 billion US dollars dropping 58.6 per cent compared to Q1 2014.
According to the report, the steam that powered M&A to a post crisis high in 2014 rolled over into Q1 2015.
“The first quarter of the year saw 3,213 deals valued at 719.1 billion US dollars increasing 13.4 per cent by value compared to Q1 2014,” said the report.
(READ MORE: Intra-Africa M&A could benefit South Africa)
“The top two global deals targeted consumer companies and as a result, boosted the consumer sector to the highest quarterly value since Q1 2008 with deals valued at 142.2 billion US dollars.”
The report also said energy, mining and utilities firms appeared to be seeking alternatives to M&A while they ride out the sliding oil price.
“The 163 fewer deals compared to Q1 2014 saw deal values drop 13.4 per cent to 72.8 billion US dollars,” read the report.