Back in 2009, private equity firms outside Europe represented only 76 deals but that figure nearly doubled to 136 deals in 2010 and has remained consistently high since, reaching a record 169 deals last year, according to Financial News citing data provider Mergermarket.
Large global players, such as Blackstone Group and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, are now being joined by smaller foreign players in the European lower mid-market. The average size of deals in Europe by foreign firms has changed dramatically since the boom era. Data reflects the trend with average deal size of USD 206 million, which is less than a third of the USD 696 million average size recorded in 2006, says the report.
Interest from private equity firms in Asia is also evident with 12 deals in Europe last year, worth USD 2.8 billion. This was the same number as the previous year, making it the joint highest year for deals since the financial crisis. Again, targeted is the mid-market, with the average size coming in at USD 230 million.
China was mentioned as a leader in this segment, targeting Western technologies to bring them back to China to fuel domestic growth. “Chinese private equity firms are deploying their capital to generate returns out of Asian growth, and they see the important role that European companies can play in that Asian growth,” says the report. (Image source: Intralinks/mergermarket)