M&A activity in Romania rebounded strongly in 2021 vs 2020 both in terms of deal value and deal count, says EY.
Total M&A for the year amounted at $6.2 billion (€ 5.2 billion) up 32% year-over-year across 178 transactions. But market transparency remains low, with deal value announced for roughly one third of transactions.
The average deal size for transactions over $100 million was $404 million, up 17% year-over-year, whereas the average deal size for transactions under $100 million was $15million, down 12% year-over-year.
Strategic deal-making accounted for 90% of M&A activity for the year while private equity captured the balance across a small number of transactions (only 17 deals).
Domestic transactions, which continue to account for more than half of all Romanian M&A (54%), increased by 35% in 2021 vs. 2020.
Romania remains an attractive investment destination for foreigners, with inbound deals accounting for 41% of all transactions. Most active foreign investors were from the U.S. (11 deals), Germany, France, and Switzerland (5 deals each), followed by UK (4 deals).
Outbound investment activity remains subdued and accounted for only 5% of activity, virtually unchanged from 2020 in terms of deal count. Technology, real estate, consumer products and retail were the most active sectors in 2021 with 72 deals in aggregate, up 50% from 48 deals in 2020.
The top-3 transactions for the year
- The acquisition of ExxonMobil’s 50% stake in Neptune Deep offshore project by Romgaz for $1.07 billion;
- The acquisition of the remaining 46% of the Romania-based and London-listed real estate investment company, Globalworth Real Estate Investments Ltd, by a consortium of Luxembourg based real estate companies (CPI Property Group – Aroundtown) for approximately $844 million;
- The acquisition of the Romanian gambling operator MaxBet by a UK-based private equity firm Novaplina Capital for $296 million.