Jersey experienced an 86% increase in M&A deal value in 2017, a year in which deal activity rose across the offshore region as a whole, according to a report released today by offshore law firm Appleby. The latest edition of Offshore-i, an Appleby report that provides data and insight on merger and acquisition activity in the major offshore financial centres, focuses on transactions announced over the course of 2017. In addition to the rise in deal activity, it also found that 2017 was the busiest year on record for offshore IPOs.
“Jersey recorded more than USD$19bn in deals in 2017, representing a significant increase over the previous year,” said Wendy Benjamin, partner and group head of Appleby’s Corporate Department in Jersey. “The jurisdiction was also home to three of the 10 largest deals recorded across the offshore region.”
Over the course of 2017, Jersey recorded a total of 129 deals, representing USD19.4bn in value. While value was up, the number of deals marked a decrease when compared to the previous year.
Key Findings of 2017:
- The total value and volume of offshore M&A deals rose when compared to 2016. The year saw 2,771 deals worth a total of USD227bn.
- The top 10 deals were each worth well over USD2bn, with the largest offshore deal being the USD6.8bn purchase of all the issued shares of Belle International, a Cayman Islands-incorporated footwear manufacturer listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
- The finance and insurance sector dominated the offshore landscape in terms of deal value.
- Acquisitions in the real estate sector make up the main theme of this year’s highest value deals. Software development also continues to attract significant acquisitions, as companies compete to build market-share in this rapidly evolving sector.
- Cayman remained home to the largest number of deals, followed by Hong Kong, the BVI and Bermuda.
- The offshore region saw well over 300 IPOs reported, making it by far the busiest year on record.
- Despite the new regulatory restrictions, China continued to be the prominent acquirer of Offshore targets, with the UK, Taiwan and the U.S. also highly placed.
- 128 deals targeting Offshore-incorporated companies were financed via private equity and venture capital, for a total value of $40bn. After a relatively quiet 2016, this marks a considerable uptick in offshore activity.
- There were 3,313 outbound deals coming out from the offshore region, worth a combined USD 347bn. The top outbound deals, the highest value offshore-related deals over the year, show a healthy spread of sectors, including logistics, manufacturing and banking institutions.