Recent research conducted by the Mergers & Acquisitions Research Centre (MARC) has shown that the UK has risen substantially to become the most attractive destination in Europe for mergers, acquisitions and people looking to purchase new business opportunities and assets.
The UK has risen a total of 6 places in the latest rankings, becoming the third biggest market in the world, only behind the USA and Singapore respectively.
Buying a business in the UK has, in fact, never looked more attractive, and businesses and individuals across the world are flocking here to acquire new business opportunities.
In a time when the cost of living crisis is worse than ever, it may come a shock to many people to think that we’re actually an attractive market for business acquisitions, particularly for foreign investors from China, the United States and elsewhere.
Why Is The UK An Attractive Place To Buy A Business?
The UK’s attractive market conditions stem from its traditionally strong economy, highly skilled labour force and access to world-class infrastructure.
In addition, the fact that it is, relatively speaking, a smaller country with a much higher population density compared to other countries in Europe means that there are more opportunities for business owners here than almost anywhere else on the continent.
Moreover, the UK’s tax laws are favourable for business owners, allowing them to take advantage of certain incentives and tax breaks that are not available in other countries.
In addition to the positives of the country, some of the factors that people would consider negatives are actually helping to encourage mergers and acquisitions at a higher rate than ever before.
For example, the high cost of living, and the current high cost of exporting goods into Europe means that many existing businesses are struggling, usually due to a lack of investment or available funding.
That means off-market sellers are typically keen to negotiate on the price and value of their businesses, offering great opportunities for those with money in the bank, or from a stronger economy, such as China nd the United States.
How Does The M&A Report Work?
The purpose of the MARC report is to evaluate the capacity of a country to “attract and sustain M&A activity”. This ranking is based on a composition of several different indicators, including: Regulatory and Political; Economic and Financial; Technological; Socio-economic; Infrastructure and Assets; Environmental, Social and Governance.
75 per cent of a country’s final score is weighted to the index, while the remaining 25 per cent is weighted to domestic and in-bound cross-border M&A activity that year.
For eight of the top 10 countries – UK, Singapore, Canada, Germany, Netherlands, France and Switzerland – the Socio-economic factor group was ranked as the biggest market challenge. This factor group reflects factors such as population size and demographics, COVID-19-related death and recovery rates, unemployment levels and the war in Ukraine.
How Long Will This Attractive M&A Marketplace Last?
Unfortunately, it’s likely that this leap in the attractiveness of potential mergers and acquisitions opportunities won’t last forever. The combination of a spiralling cost of living, in addition to the ongoing impacts of the war in Ukraine, high export rates into Europe and continuously reduced funding in the NHS, railways and other essential infrastructure will have a negative impact on the attractiveness of the UK as a place to acquire a business.
While some sectors are almost guaranteed to remain buoyant, such as the tech industry, and may even become more attractive over time due to the UK’s commitment to investing in technology infrastructure and development, other sectors may take a hit in terms of M&A activity.
As with all economic cycles, it is likely that this current period of business acquisitions will eventually come to an end as other countries become more attractive for investors, out-competing the UK in terms of cost and investor confidence.
In the meantime, however, it seems that the UK is an extremely attractive place to buy a business – something that many foreign investors are taking full advantage of.
Why Choose UK Business Brokers To Support Your Business Acquisitions In The UK?
A team of specialist business brokers in the UK can be invaluable during an M&A or other kind of business acquisition.
The expertise that UK business brokers have in the local market can be invaluable for those looking to acquire a business here, as well as providing access to off-market opportunities and managing the whole process of due diligence required during an M&A.
The benefits of using a specialist UK broker go beyond just finding off-market businesses for sale, they can:
- Provide advice on the best way to structure a deal and negotiate on price
- Share market knowledge and insights, such as industry trends, competitor analysis and local supplier information
- Help identify potential tax liabilities related to the acquisition process
- Act as a bridge between buyer and seller to ensure a smooth transaction
The UK is currently enjoying a surge in business acquisitions, making it one of the most attractive places to buy a business in Europe. By taking advantage of the specialist advice offered by UK business brokers, investors will be able to ensure they make the most out of this opportunity and benefit from the current economic climate.
For Specialist UK Mergers & Acquisitions, Call Chelsea Corporate Today
Here at Chelsea Corporate, we are experienced M&A advisors with a successful track record in helping our clients to identify, acquire and successfully manage businesses in the UK. Our team of expert brokers can provide valuable guidance throughout the whole process, from market analysis and due diligence through to post acquisition management and tax advice.
For more information, or to start your business acquisition in the UK today, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our experienced team.