M&A in Europe blog by CFIE

Recent M&A articles

M&A during COVID-19

At the beginning of the year, I wrote about Covid-19 and the expected outcome for the M&A market. With this article, I want to give my opinion on what is happening with the market of business sales and acquisitions during this crisis. Further, I also want to see how M&A advisors can position themselves and how our activity could change. What can we learn professionally from this pandemic? How can we change our processes, if necessary?

Read more

CFIE M&A forecast for 2020 and the impact of the COVID-19 virus

Normally, I don’t write about subjects that have political aspects. More importantly, it is difficult to compare business issues to a viral outbreak that is a human tragedy for those infected and their loved ones. I also must admit that I am not at all an expert in the field, have no experience as a microbiologist and can’t predict the views or ideas of the wider population. In this article, I mainly want to get an idea about the thoughts of the M&A community on the impact on our profession.

Read more

2019 Annual CFIE M&A (IT) congress in Budapest

In this article, I want to give you an update on the recent M&A congress the CFIE team had in Budapest. The main focus was on IT sell and buy mandates. However, M&A projects in other industries were also discussed. During the annual CFIE conference, our partners meet and network. We all present actual business cases where partner advisors give input and support. The CFIE team has been getting together on an annual basis since 2008. This annual meeting takes place in different cities across Europe. This year, our local M&A firm made the preparations and hosted the meet-up in Budapest, which is a beautiful city for a congress.

Read more

Selling your company to your employees

This article deals with another type of buyer for your business that it is often neglected. Your employees are a potential buyer of your company. In this article we try to help to determine if employee ownership is the right strategy for you and your business?

Read more

M&A advisor's added value in acquiring a company

Both sellers and buyers have a different opinion on what is of value to them during a transaction. In the last blog article, I described the “added-value” of an advisor through the eyes of a seller. In this newsletter, I will describe the support of an M&A advisor from the point of view of a buyer.

Read more

M&A advisor's added value

In practice, both sellers and buyers have a different opinion on what is of value to them during a transaction. In this blog article, I want to analyze this “added-value” of an advisor through the eyes of a seller. In the next letter, I want to do the same from the point of view of a buyer.

Read more

Due Diligence process history and future

In this article, I want to share some thoughts on the future of the due diligence (DD) process.

Continue reading

Future vision European IT M&A market

In this article, I want to give you some insight into the European M&A market for IT companies. I am in the process of creating a vision of how IT companies should be sold in the 21st century. The question I am asking myself is if the current M&A market for IT companies is efficient.

Continue reading

How to execute a good buy and build strategy?

With this article, I want to gather the corporate finance knowledge that the European M&A community has on buy and build strategies. I would like to start a discussion about what examples there are of good buy and build strategies and along with the failures. I also will give some details on the requirements or conditions for success in a buy and build acquisition strategy. I want to show the difference between buyers that have well thought out plans and others that act more ad-hoc. I will also touch upon the difference between strategic buyers and private equity players that look for a growth strategy via acquisitions. Of course, I will touch upon the issues the M&A advisor has when advising or supporting a buy and build player in executing their strategy.

Read More about Executing a buy and build strategy

What are cultural deal breakers in European M&A transactions?

In this article I focus on how cultural items can have an effect in (and especially after) M&A transactions.

Learn more about the Cultural deal breakers in European M&A transactions

Share Purchase Agreement: how important is the role of a lawyer?

In this article I will give you some practical experience about the Share Purchase Agreement (SPA) and more importantly the role of the lawyers in getting this document signed. Lawyers play a crucial role in drafting the share purchase agreement. Especially since this is normally the latest stage of a transaction and both sides hope and expect to finish this hurdle in a positive way....

Learn more about the importance of a lawyer

Growing industry teams across Europe

In this article I will give you an update on our plans and progress with the M&A industry teams across Europe. CFIE has a large number of advisors across Europe whom all have knowledge of specific industries. We are getting these advisors, together to form an European industry team. They cooperate in sell and buy side mandates across Europe for their specific industry. The first two industries in which we have started this initiative are Plastics and IT. I am interested to hear your thoughts on this initiative and if it makes any difference for you as a buyer or as a seller./> Read More about ...... Growing M&A industry teams across Europe

Commitment of buyers and how to approach an acquisition?

In practice we see a lot of buyers and they all have a different approach. When buyers reach out to us their objective is the same: they want to buy a company. However, what we don’t know anything yet about their level of preparation and commitment. Here buyers differ a lot. Differences exist in their commitment, the preparation they have done, the funding they have available and the strategic......
Learn more about Commitment of buyers and how to approach an acquisition

Selling your company yourself?

Different alternatives for business owners to sell their company. I planned to write this article when coming across, once again, various business owners and the different way in which they approach a business sale. I describe some practical examples of cases we come across in everyday life. It might help business owners that want to sell their company at the day when they need to make the decision of their own on how to approach a business sale. The articles prepare business owners for a business sale and helps them to get an insight to the consequences of selling a company themselves .........

Learn more about the aspects of selling a company yourself

Mergers and acquisitions in Germany 2015

The German M&A market in 2015 was almost as strong as in the previous year, but underperformed other markets, in particular the booming US M&A market 2015. The number of transactions larger than € 10 million and the aggregated value of these transactions were slightly below the strong figures reached in 2014. However, we also saw some larger takeover attempts in Germany that failed and some planned divestitures that did not come to fruition in 2015. What was missing compared to....
Learn more about the German mergers and acquisitions market 2015

Mergers and acquisitions in Austria 2015

The Austrian M&A market in 2015 was weaker than the previous year, at least with regard to the number and the value of large transactions (min. value €100 million) and underperformed other markets, in particular the booming US M&A market 2015. What was missing in 2015 compared.....
Learn more about the M&A market in Austria

Mergers and acquisitions in Switzerland 2015

The Swiss M&A market in 2015 was substantially weaker than in the previous year and underperformed other markets, in particular the booming US M&A market in 2015.
The three biggest published transactions with Swiss participation with a combined value of approx. $50 billion were all deals in the US, only one of them with a buyer domiciled in Switzerland: the $28.3 billion public takeover and subsequent merger of American Chubb Corporation and US listed property and casuality insurer ACE Limited which.....
learn more about M&A in Switzerland 2015

How do buyers with an acquisition strategy operate?

How do buyers operate and what makes a good acquisition strategy? I want to show the difference between buyers that have well thought plans and others that act more ad-hoc. The difference between possible behaviours of strategic buyers will be described in this article. I am referring to strategic buyers that look for a growth strategy via acquisitions.........

learn more about the different acquisition strategies of buyers

Annual CFIE M&A congress

In this article I want to give you some insight in the networking that is done behind the scenes by the CFIE M&A team. A special focus here is on the annual CFIE conference where our partners meet and network. Over the years the CFIE team has been in various cities across Europe for CFIE meetings. Example of historic locations were we met were Barcelona and Frankfurt. This year we decided to meet-up in Rome......

learn more about the annual CFIE M&A congress

How to control emotions in a business sale?

In this article we want to give some thoughts about how to handle and control emotions during a business sale. How can business owners best control emotions? What are issues or items that can turn emotions on during a business sale? But also, what does a M&A advisor need to do to keep emotions under control in order to run a smooth sale of the company? How to control emotions .....

learn more about controlling emotions during a business sale

Turkish M&A market 2015

M&A transactions along with other corporate finance actions such as divestitures, spin-offs, IPOs, corporate bond issuances and seasoned offerings are nowadays as much a talking point among finance professionals in Turkey as in Western economies. To read more about the M&A market in Turkey ....

learn more about M&A Market Turkey 2015

What about a M&A analyst job and career?

In this article I want to give you some insights in the world of M&A. What is the reality of an analyst life in mergers and acquisitions? What does a M&A career do to you? What are the disadvantages of a M&A analyst job? Is the merger and acquisition and Corporate Finance lifestyle for you?.....

learn more about What about a M&A analyst job and career?

Is the Information Memorandum (IM) useful or overrated?

Is the Information Memorandum an useful or overrated document? A big piece of the work by an external advisor is to make a well written Information Memorandum. What is the perceived and practical value of an Information Memorandum. Please read more about an Information Memorandum ......

learn more about Is an Information Memorandum useful?


The Romanian BPO M&A market is quite active and many transactions occur. Below we give some of the examples of some larger Romanian BPO M&A transactions. NTT Data Corporation announced in November 2013 the acquisition of EBS Romania, a local company specialised in providing near-shore IT services for international customers. Please read more at about BPO in Romania ......

learn more about M&A BPO Market Romania 2015

M&A Market Bulgaria 2014

Almost all business sectors in Bulgaria grew throughout 2014, although modestly. The only exception are financial services. Value added in the financial services sector dropped by 1.4% compared to the last year. In other sectors growth ranged from 0.4% to almost 3% compared to 2013. To read more about the M&A market in Bulgaria ....

learn more about M&A Market Bulgaria 2014

Why do buyers make acquisitions?

In this article we want to give you some insights in the reasoning why buyers make acquisitions. Acquisitions can have an offensive, mainly growth related, nature or on the contrary have a defensive nature. Defensive moves can be especially of importance with larger acquisitions in markets with only a limited number of players. Sometimes a buyer must just prevent that a competitor leaves the stage with a desired acquisition. This is an example of a defensive move. The reasons for acquisitions .....

learn more about reasons for acquisitions

What type of M&A mandate to sign?

In this article we want to give information on what type of M&A contracts (‘mandates’) we see in the market. We want to get a discussion going with M&A advisors to hear their opinion and feedback on this subject. In the end this should help business owners to understand what the different contract options are when they want to sell their company. It should also give business owners an idea of the possible .........

learn more about type of mandates

What is a VDR (Virtual Data Room)?

Most people have an idea of what a VDR is or have worked with it in the past. The Wikipedia definition of a VDR is an online repository of information that is used for the storing and distribution of documents.

We are active in the field of M&A and would describe a virtual data room as an environment to present all relevant company material and documents to interested parties. These parties are mostly possible buyers (or investors) for a company. The material ranges from legal.........

learn more about virtual data rooms

M&A trends in 2013 globally

The world M&A sector continued a slightly downward trend in 2013. While the number of transactions stayed in the same level as 2012, the total deal volume decreased 3% according to Mergermarket’s annual report. The total volume was in 2013 2,215 B$. European M&A deals valued at 631B$ dropped 12% compared to 2012 (US$ 718bn) and showed a second annual decline.

read more about Outlook M&A market Romania 2014

M&A market in Bulgaria in 2013

M&A trends in 2013 globally. The world M&A sector continued a slightly downward trend in 2013. While the number of transactions stayed in the same level as 2012, the total deal volume decreased 3.2% according to Mergermarket’s annual report. The total volume was in 2013 2,215.1 B$. European M&A deals valued at US$ 631.6bn dropped 12% compared to 2012 (US$ 717.8bn) and showed a second annual decline.

read more about M&A trends in Bulgaria

What is a forwarding company worth?

In this article we want to give you some insights in the valuations of forwarding companies. This is the content of the article:

  • Developments in the global forwarding industry
  • Value and price expectations of business owners in the forwarding market
  • How to value a company in general
  • What determines the price of a forwarding company
  • Detailed description of items that have an effect on price
  • Valuation multiples we see in the forwarding market

read more about the valuation of a forwarding company

(Un)successful mergers and acquisitions examples

In this article I want to open a discussion on practical examples of (un)successful mergers and acquisitions examples. I want to focus on the larger corporate deals that everybody knows. Based on these larger examples we can determine what went wrong or what went right. This can help us to learn how to prevent these mistakes for the smaller deals we do.

Read successful M&A examples.

Differences between selling a software company and a ‘normal’ company?

There is quite some differences between selling a software business and a normal business. So what is different about a Software Business?

In reality two extremes occur in the sale of a software company: Future potential of perceived and future realisable value. Or established recurring revenue from a strong customer base.

In London over 250 software companies have......

Read en discuss about selling a software company

What is a Deal Breaker?

Quite regularly we hear about successful transactions. Less frequently we hear about deals that have not closed. Even the M&A transactions that come to a successful end might have had some difficult moments. Also in these transactions possible issues for a deal to not happen can have occurred. This article focuses on deal breakers and to a lesser extend on methods how to prevent them.

Read en discuss about M&A deal breakers in transactions

M&A trends in 2013

World M&A sector was in downward trend in 2013. When the number of transactions stayed in the same level as 2012, the total deal volume decreased 3.2% according to Mergermarket annual report. The total volume was in 2013 2,215.1 B$. European M&A deals valued at US$ 631.6bn dropped 12% from 2012 (US$ 717.8bn) and represented a second annual decline.

Read more details about M&A in Estonia

What is blogging?

To get a better understanding of blogging and to answer this question I typed the text blogging in Google and visited the number one result in the leading search engine. If you like to make things difficult you should follow the nr.1 result and read the article from Wikipedia. The Nr. 2 result that......

Discuss with us about Blogging in the M&A market

Financing alternatives for your business in 2014

For financing your company there are several options. Most important options at this moment are;

  • Bank loans
  • Crowd Funding
  • Lending by guilds
  • Funding via VC or PE
  • Funding via M&A

Learn how to finance your business in 2014

M&A deal by Austrian freight forwarder

Weiss-Rohlig, a joint venture of Gebruder Weiss GmbH and Rohlig & Co. Holding GmbH & Co. KG, has acquired JHB Express, Ltd., a Japan-based air and sea freight shipping company. As a part of the transaction, Weiss-Rohlig has also acquired air cargo certifications such as the IATA and the Japanese consolidation license. The acquisition will expand Weiss-Rohlig’s presence.........

Read and discuss about this M&A deal in freight forwarding

France logistics acquirer buys a China-based freight forwarding company

At the end of 2011 Groupe Norbert Dentressangle, a France-based logistics services company, has acquired APC Beijing International, a China-based freight forwarding company. The acquisition strengthens Norbert's network in China and enhances Norbert’s service offering in airfreight forwarding. Getting access to the Chinese freight forwarding market is becoming more and.....

Read and discuss about this forwarding deal

M&A road & rail transportation in Italy

M&A in the Italian transportation and forwarding market will continue to occur. If one looks at the changing patterns in the fashion industry which is very important for Italy it is clear that the transportation and forwarding market will adapt to this. M&A is an alternative for larger buyers to improve its position an create synergies. In 2011 the Italian road & rail transportation market grew by 6.5% to reach a value of $60 billion. The industry is forecast to have a value of $85 billion in 2016, an increase of 42.3% since 2011. Rail freight is a small segment.......

Read and discus about M&A in the Italian transportation market

Acquisition of Italian pharmaceutical logistics company by UPS

At the end of last year UPS (United Parcel Service Inc), an US-based package delivery company, has entered into an agreement to acquire Pieffe Group, an Italy-based pharma logistics company. The acquisition allows United Parcel Service to support its ongoing global healthcare strategy. The cosmetics as well as the fashion industry represent large .......

Discuss with us about this logistics acquisition in Italy

M&A in the transportation market in Spain

We do expect quite some consolidation and hence M&A activity to see in the Spanish transportation market over the next years. Being able to deliver road transportation at low prices is crucial and hence scale (and cheap financing possibilities) is an important driver to compete. In 2011 the Spanish road and rail market reached a value of $34 billion. In 2016 the rail & road industry is forecast to have a value of $52 billion, an increase of 53% since 2011. Road freight is accounting for 99% of the transportation market value. The market in Spain accounts for.......

Read about M&A in Spanish road & rail transportation

Acquisition of ocean freight forwarding companies

Last year Kerry Logistics acquired two Freight Forwarding Companies in the UK. Kerry Logistics Network Limited, a Hong-Kong based provider of freight and logistics services, has acquired Bergen Freight Forwarding Limited, a UK-based sea freight forwarding company. Bergen Freight Forwarding Limited is a freight forwarding company specializing in sea freight imports from India. Ocean freight from India is expected to increase significantly so the freight forwarding companies involved........

Read and dicus about M&A in ocean freight forwarding

M&A in Italy (2012)

Italy is the 10th largest economy in the world based on purchasing power parity. The fiscal situation is fragile and political circumstances could damage reforms and could lead to further instability. An €40bn ($56.2bn) austerity program should tackle the weak financial position. According to Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index 2010, Italy is ranked 67th among 178 countries. The foreign investment laws of Italy are similar to those of other EU countries, structural rigidities and the dominant public sector have an adverse impact. Tax rates in Italy remain..........

Discuss with us about M&A in Italy

M&A in Finland (2012)

Finland joined the European Union (EU) in 1995. Finland’s debt remains below the 60% benchmark set by the European Union's (EU’s) growth and stability pact. It is declining from 44% of the GDP in 2008 to 38% in May 2011. Despite the debt level, exports are still not returned to the level before the crisis. Due to the decline in international trade the total value declined from $129bn in 2008 to $89bn in 2009 with a small recovery to $90bn in 2010.

Almost no corruption exists in Finland. The country is ranked 4th out of .......

Get informed about M&A in Finland