Global industrial manufacturing deals insights: Year-end 2018

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Executive summary

Through the first half of 2018 deal momentum was robust and we expected deal value and volume to significantly outpace 2017; however, that didn’t materialize. After a strong Q2 2018 where deal value eclipsed $42 billion, the industrial manufacturing sector saw double digit declines in volume while contributing only $35 billion of additional deal value in the second half of 2018. With that said, 2018 deal value was $97.4 billion, an 11% increase compared to 2017 fueled by more megadeals. Deal volume significantly dropped off in the second half of 2018 primarily resulting from geopolitical uncertainty, downward GPD growth concerns in the US and China as well as volatility in the stock markets. Amidst all this uncertainty we remain cautiously optimistic the M&A landscape in 2019 will continue to be an attractive play for deal makers.

Key trends/highlights

  • Total aggregate disclosed deal value for the full year 2018 increased from $88 billion in 2017 to $97.4 billion in 2018, an 11% increase in deal value.
  • Total aggregate disclosed deal value for Q4 2018 was $18.4 billion compared to $16.1 billion in Q3 2018, a 15% increase in deal value.
  • Total deal volume decreased in 2018 to 2,330 deals, a 10% drop compared to 2017. The Q4 2018 deal volume of 464 deals was the lowest quarter for deal activity since 2014.
  • The largest deal in 2018 was an $11.1 billion acquisition announced in the fourth quarter.
  • There were 16 large transactions (deals greater than $1 billion) that were announced or closed in 2018 with aggregated value of $43.1 billion, compared to 21 deals with aggregate value of $40 billion, an 8% increase.

“The year was certainly ‘a tale of two halves’ for Industrial Manufacturing deal makers, with the latter causing deal makers to pause and question what is to come.”

Paul Elie, US Industrial Manufacturing Deals Leader

Contact us

Paul Elie

Industrial Products Deals Leader, PwC US

Tel: +1 (313) 394 3517

Bobby Bono

Industrial Manufacturing Leader, PwC US

Tel: +1 (813) 222 7118

Barry Misthal

Global Industrial Manufacturing Leader, PwC Switzerland

Tel: +41 58 792 8239

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