Mergers and acquisitions activity could have another banner year in 2018, based on survey responses from more than 400 middle-market executives, the majority of whom said they are either currently involved in, or are considering, a sale or merger this year.
In its “Middle Market M&A Outlook for 2018” report, Citizens Bank reported that 56 percent of sellers are currently involved in M&A activity or plan to be this year, an increase from 48 percent in 2017, even as some aging sellers continue to hold out.
“There is still a Baby Boomer overhang with a lot of owners waiting for the right time to sell,” said Ralph M. Della Ratta, head of M&A advisory, Citizens Capital Markets, in a press release summarizing the report. “Several factors such as the tax reform law and historically high valuations certainly give them a great opportunity to make a deal.”
The survey found that buyers will also likely continue to be active in 2018; about three-quarters of those surveyed said they are currently involved in or open to an acquisition.
Both buyers and sellers are optimistic about the year—35 percent of sellers said they expect to complete a deal in 2018, compared with just 25 percent in 2017. Similarly, 40 percent of buyers see an acquisition in their future, compared with 23 percent in the 2017 survey.
Citizens defines the middle market as comprising companies with annual revenue between $25 million and $3 billion.
Kathryn Mulligan is the associate editor of Middle Market Growth.