Outlook for M&A 2023: Experts warn of tougher times ahead

Annual mergers and acquisitions event discusses market trends for 2023.

The next year will provide a new set of challenges for global deals and private equity, according to experts at the 13th Annual Outlook for M&A event hosted by the Mergers and Acquisitions Research Centre (MARC) at Bayes Business School(formerly Cass).

More than 100 guests were in attendance at the event which returned to an in-person format for the first time since early 2020. Practitioners outlined their predictions for the field in the full year 2023 – including how recent geo-political events are affecting the destination, value and sectors of deal activity.

Topics of discussion explored strong performance in North America; the impact of lifting Zero-Covid measures in China; Brexit; Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors; and sector valuations. With a number of Bayes students in the audience, the panel also offered advice on breaking into the industry.

Outlook for M&A panellists

The event was introduced and hosted by Professor Scott Moeller, Director of MARC. Professor Moeller said the event once again provided valuable insights to both M&A practitioners and students:

“Each year, the Outlook for M&A gives us an opportunity to discuss and debate the state of play across markets with leading industry practitioners and an engaged audience of students, alumni and guests. It was excellent to be able to host this as an in-person event once again this year.

“Deal volume at the start of 2022, as predicted this time last year, was particularly strong despite Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. However, this momentum significantly slowed into the second half of the year in the face of numerous other headwinds, including steep inflation and interest rate rises.

“It will be interesting to see how these issues play out in 2023, and where dealmakers will pursue their interests as they seek the best value.”

Susan Kilsby, Advisory Board Chairman of MARC and panel chair for the event, said:

“2023 will be an important year for global M&A as it seeks to regain momentum following a slowdown.

“The Mergers and Acquisitions Research Centre casts a keen eye on the dynamics underpinning deal movement, as we continue to provide cutting-edge research insights. This annual Outlook event brings the industry together with academia to provide thought leadership in this important field.”

The panel of experts included:

  • Cyril Auger, Ardian
  • Lucinda Guthrie, ION Analytics M&A
  • William Mansfield, Credit Suisse
  • Amanda Scott, Willis Towers Watson
  • Matt Wells, SS&C Intralinks

Read more about the Mergers and Acquisitions Research Centre (MARC).

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