The Offshore region enjoyed a busy year in 2017. Worldwide, deal activity fell just short of the record-breaking figures from previous years.
While the circumstances surrounding the timing and background to deal making is wide and varied, political developments in Washington and Europe have undoubtedly caused consternation. Meanwhile, Chinese outbound deal action has fallen as companies have faced increased amounts of official scrutiny. Capital controls were introduced by China’s foreign exchange regulator at the end of 2016 followed by a government-directed assessment of any cross-border financing arrangements.
However, the spate of ongoing positive economic news being reported in most regions of the world, along with improved oil prices, has provided a bedrock of confidence. European elections, tax reforms in the US and Brexit negotiations with the UK have not led to the economic fallout feared by some. In China, the renminbi has strengthened and strategic, prudent deals continue to be approved.
The opportunities to expand internationally to fill product and production line gaps and to acquire technology, remain tempting and accessible. Meanwhile, worldwide GDP is still low, and achieving robust growth is likely to require M&A commitment.
In the midst of all this, the Offshore region has maintained a high level of deal activity, with inbound and outbound volume outpacing the previous year, while IPOs and Private Equity deals have been especially prevalent
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