The value of announced merger and acquisition (M&A) transactions, with any sub-Saharan African involvement, reached $10.1-billion during the first quarter of 2017, the highest opening quarter total in six years, research firm Thomson Reuters Africa has found.
In its sub-Saharan African deals intelligence analysis for the first quarter, released on Thursday, the company highlighted that inbound M&A activity had reached a seven-year high of $6.4-billion, more than five times the value recorded in the first three months of last year, with the US, China and Switzerland leading investments.
Domestic and inter-sub-Saharan African M&A totalled $1.5-billion, up 130% year-on-year, while outbound M&A declined 40% to $794.6-million.
South Africa’s overseas acquisitions accounted for 59% of sub-Saharan African outbound M&A activity, while companies headquartered in the Seychelles and Mauritius accounted for 23% and 18% of sub-Saharan outbound M&A activity, respectively.
The biggest deal clinched during the quarter was US oil and gas company Exxon Mobil buying a 25% stake of a Mozambique liquefied natural gas project from Italy’s Eni for $2.8-billion. The deal helped boost the value of deals in the energy and power sector to $4.2-billion.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch topped the first-quarter Any Sub-Saharan African Involvement Announced M&A Financial Adviser League Table with a 28% share of the market.
Meanwhile, Thomson Reuters noted that investment banking fees reached an estimated $78.7-million during the first quarter, with fees from completed M&A transactions totalling $42.5-million, 26% down year-on-year.
Completed M&A and equity capital markets fees generated 54% and 14% respectively.