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It seems as though every other day, the headlines announce a new acquisition among major retailers. The giants in the industry are diversifying their products, sucking up more stock, and building mighty kingdoms that boutique and small business owners can’t even throw stones at. How can these smaller businesses possibly compete? First, take a look at what’s happening… It was recently announced that Michael Kors would acquire the Jimmy Choo brand for $1.17 billion…. Read More

Disclosure schedules are an integral part of any merger or acquisition (M&A) transaction. They contain information required by the acquisition agreement—typically a listing of important contracts, intellectual property, employee information, and other materials as well as exceptions or qualifications to the detailed representations and warranties of the selling company contained in the acquisition agreement. An incorrect or incomplete disclosure schedule could result in a breach of the acquisition agreement and possible significant… Read More

Timing is, without doubt, one of the most critical factors in mergers and acquisitions; a recent report found that it is, in fact, the single most reliable predictor in terms of creating real shareholder value. But why is timing so crucial? Think Macro! Acquiring a company is a risk that’s ultimately taken based on the health or otherwise of economies – and we’re talking about macro-economies here, looking way beyond the company… Read More

ROC Northwest are a residential care, domiciliary care and educational care service provider for young people with Autistic Spectrum Disorders, learning, physical disabilities and complex needs with associated challenging behaviour and young people with SEBD. Community inclusion and participation enhance and enrich young people’s lives both educationally and socially. ROC offer exceptional, individual quality environments that put young people at the centre of the programmes they operate. Speaking about the deal, Benchmark… Read More

Entrepreneurs, by nature, are people who spend a considerable amount of time looking for the next opportunity. And for them, ‘the next opportunity’ often includes a suitable time to sell their company. But what, practically, are the most common reasons for sale? 1. Business Value vs Liquidity Getting hold of liquidity in your company is a valuable opportunity, because while there is always value in a business, there is no real liquidity… Read More

Benchmark International has recently opened a new office in Cape Town, South Africa (see 3rd July blog post), headed up by Andre Bresler and Dustin Graham. This is an exciting development for Benchmark International, in a dynamic evolving market. South Africa is a core strategic market for any global M&A team, as the country is the conduit for more than half of M&A activity across the African continent. In South Africa itself,… Read More

French rental car company, Europcar has made its fourth acquisition of the year in the form of Europe’s largest low-cost car rental agency, Goldcar. Europcar announced in December that it was looking to spend up to €500 million on franchised companies, car sharing services or local rivals within the car rental sector in order to achieve its ambitious growth targets and remain competitive. Caroline Parot, Europcar chief executive, commented that the acquisition… Read More

California-based Hewlett Packard Enterprise has been busy bolstering its portfolio to stay ahead in cloud computing, with even more acquisitions on the horizon. This year, the company revealed purchases worth more than $1.5 billion and is looking to boost demand for server and storage products in order to stay ahead of competitors, such as Dell and Amazon.com. These recent acquisitions come after CEO, Meg Whitman, split the computer and printer business and… Read More

Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has given the go-ahead for the £11 billion merger of Scotland-based asset management companies Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management. Stating that it had decided not to refer the merger to a second phase in-depth investigation, the CMA has made way for the formation of Europe’s second largest fund manager and a global top 25 player, with £660 billion assets under management. The CMA began a… Read More

RPC, the international design and engineering company, has cited recent acquisitions in the last financial year as key factor in its profits more than doubling. Established in 1991, the UK-based specialist in polymer conversion in packaging and non-packaging markets has spent in excess of £1.3 billion on acquisitions since December 2015, which grew revenues by 67 per cent to £2.7 billion in the year to March 31. Recent acquisitions of French bottle-top… Read More

Benchmark International is proud to announce that it has, once again, been named ‘International Mid-Market Corporate Finance Adviser of the Year’ at the annual ACQ Global Awards. This is an especially proud moment for Benchmark International as it marks the third time that it has secured this prestigious award, having previously won in 2014 and 2015. Since 2006, the ACQ Global Awards have celebrated the achievements, innovation and brilliance of industry leaders,… Read More

A Manchester-based M&A specialist has expanded into South Africa with the opening of an office in Cape Town. Benchmark International already has a significant presence in both the UK and North America, with its original Manchester base having been joined by offices in Oxford, New York, Tampa, Austin and Nashville. Its Cape Town office will be headed up by Andre Bresler and Dustin Graham. Bresler, South Africa managing director, said: “This is a… Read More

After years of approaches, US-based Huntsman Corp and Switzerland’s Clariant AG have announced that they will merge to create a chemicals manufacturer worth more than $14 billion. Last year, it was reported that talks had broken down between the two over a disagreement of who would play the lead role; however, a statement from Clariant AG announced that the deal will create a global specialty chemicals company that is 52 per cent… Read More

Amazon has announced it will acquire upmarket grocer, Whole Foods Market Inc, for $13.7 billion in a deal that includes the company’s debt. Expected to close late 2017, the deal will not only be the largest in the online retailer’s history, but also a major step in expanding into bricks-and-mortar retail.   Founded in 1978 in Texas, Whole Foods Market has been a pioneer of natural and organic foods, and, today, boasts… Read More

Benchmark International is pleased to announce the sale of H&G Systems Limited to ATS Global. From their centrally based office and workshop facility in Broxburn – Livingston, H&G Systems Limited are well positioned to cover the needs of their customer base throughout the UK. With operational demo kit and skilled staff on-hand, H&G welcome customers to their premises to discuss their Industrial Process & Control Automation requirements further. ATS is The Independent… Read More

The announcement in December of last year that Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox was positioned for a full takeover of Sky was hardly one of the most popular deal announcements of 2016, and most certainly the least surprising. The £11.7bn bid has proved to be a contentious one, and Murdoch and co. have now reached one of their first major hurdles in the deal process in the form of competition authorities. Fox… Read More

Earlier this month, the health insurance organisation Cigna Corp. announced the termination of its $54bn merger agreement with insurance company Anthem Inc. The deal has taken a further complicated turn, after Cigna announced that it had filed a lawsuit against Anthem seeking a $1.85bn termination fee, plus a staggering $13bn in damages. In an interesting twist, Anthem has launched its own lawsuit against Cigna, claiming the company has sabotaged the merger in… Read More

Benchmark International is proud to announce that it has placed top of the North West Financial Adviser table for the second consecutive year in Experian’s annual North West and Manchester Corporate Finance Review. Having advised on 34 transactions during 2016, Benchmark International dominated the table for the most active individuals in the North West, with the top three spots being filled by Peter Kelly, Nick Hulme and James Robinson. “I would like… Read More

Please take a read of our latest edition of THE MARK, Benchmark International’s in-house publication which provides readers with a thorough insight into key events within the M&A industry. In this edition, we cover what was a significant year for M&A, with Brexit happening and the recent appointment of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States. However, despite what many may call the ‘Year of Change’, Benchmark International continued… Read More

Author Terry Pratchett once said, “A lie can run round the world before the truth has got its boots on.” Nowhere is this truer than in the world of mergers and acquisitions. The potential buy-out of Twitter by Disney has been the subject of much rumour and this article looks at their veracity as well as examining other suitors that may be eyeing the micro-blogging site. Birds and eggs Twitter was launched… Read More