North West Manufacturing M&A Up As Deal Levels Nationally Fall

North West Manufacturers Attract More PE Investment


David Shirt, Press Officer | 0161 838 3094

Deal activity involving North West-based manufacturing firms increased by 16.4 per cent last year compared to 2012, despite a national fall in the number of transactions completed within the sector, says a new report.

According to data from law firm Irwin Mitchell, North West-based manufacturers were the target of more merger and acquisition (M&A) activity during 2013 than at any time since 2008.

The North West region’s share of manufacturing M&A activity across England reached 14.4 per cent in 2013. This was up from 12.2 per cent during the previous year and higher than all other regions except the South East where the figure stood at 31.5 per cent.

The report also found there were more manufacturing deals which involved private equity (PE). During 2013, 28.5 per cent of M&A included some venture capital, whilst in 2012 it stood at 20.6 per cent.

In the North West, the region experienced a rise in the number of PE-led deals, but its national share of venture capital investment in manufacturing fell last year. Despite the North West region seeing three more PE-led manufacturing deals compared to 2012, the total percentage fell to 17.2 per cent from 19.8 per cent in 2012.

This figure is still significantly higher than in Yorkshire (9.9 per cent) and the West Midlands (8.8 per cent) but lower than the figure for the South East which last year stood at 27.7 per cent.

Expert Opinion
This report certainly reveals some encouraging signs as an uplift in deal activity in the North West points to greater confidence in the manufacturing sector generally.

“The manufacturing sector is clearly attractive to private equity at the moment and it was good to see that the proportion of M&A which has been funded with venture capital increased last year. Faced with this growing appetite and an improving economic picture, ambitious companies here in the region should seriously consider this option whilst they explore opportunities for developing and growing their business.”
Andrea Cropley, Partner

This research is based on data sourced from Experian Corpfin’s proprietary M&A deals database.