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The Mergers and Acquisitions Race is On

Top 10 Mergers and Acquisitions – Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Industry Gets the Knives Out

| Author: Matthias Back

Round and round and round it goes: Mergers and acquisitions are the top attractions for 2016. Especially chemical and pharmaceutical companies keep the m&a merry-go-round running: Five of ten major acquisitions in 2016 stem from these branches.
Round and round and round it goes: Mergers and acquisitions are the top attractions for 2016. Especially chemical and pharmaceutical companies keep the m&a merry-go-round running: Five of ten major acquisitions in 2016 stem from these branches. (Picture: © Harald Biebel - Fotolia)

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2015 was the year of mergers and acquisitions (M&A). Mergers and acquisitions increased by 43 % worldwide to a new record value of 4.5 billion dollars as compared to the previous year. PROCESS presents the biggest deals of the previous 18 months in detail.

Even if the three biggest mergers and acquisitions are not from the chemicals and pharmaceuticals industry, it is primarily this economic sector which is witnessing a lot of movement at present. Weakening competition, limited organic growth as well as continuously shrinking profit margins are forcing companies to think out of the box. Even if the three biggest mergers and acquisitions are not from the chemicals and pharmaceuticals industry, it is primarily this economic sector which is witnessing a lot of movement at present. Weakening competition, limited organic growth as well as continuously shrinking profit margins are forcing companies to think out of the box.

(The following picture gallery delivers background information about the individual deals.))

The biggest acquisition of the previous 18 months boasting a total volume of 107 billion dollars was accomplished in the beverages industry. The Belgian brewery Anheuser Bush Inbev acquired the US brewery Group Sab Miller.

With the acquisition of British gas specialists BG Group by the British-Netherlands oil group Royal Dutch Shell for 79.3 billion dollars, a deal from the oil/gas area made it to the Top 3. The Timer Warner Cable acquisition by Charter Communications which is only 50 million dollars less is another proof of the increasing consolidation in the US cable market.

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The biggest M&A deal in the chemicals and pharmaceuticals sector in the last one-and-a-half years is The merger of Dow Chemical and Dupont. The jumbo merger between the two US companies is expected to cost 68.6 billion dollars and would threaten the current leadership status of BASF in the chemicals industry at least for the time being. According to media reports however, plans are already in place to divide the newly created mega group into three independent companies in the areas of agrochemicals and seeds, substances as well as special chemicals.

The US computer manufacturer Dell came fifth with the acquisition of storage specialists EMC for 67 billion dollars and is therefore the first merger deal between two technology companies in the Top 10.

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