Why investors are choosing Ireland to do business

Rory O’Keeffe, Transaction Services Partner recently featured in The Irish Times Special Report on Mergers & Acquisitions.

“We are seeing increasing international interest from a wide spectrum of investor types, from international private equity firms looking for new investment opportunities or bolt-on investments to their existing portfolio companies, to public and private corporates seeking acquisitive growth opportunities to grow revenue and transform business operations,” says Rory.

The pandemic hasn’t dampened such activity at all, if anything, it may have accelerated it. It’s not just here either. Global M&A activity in 2021 was at its highest levels over the last decade, he says.

BDO has been involved in transactions involving international parties across a wide range of sectors, from healthcare and technology, to manufacturing and renewables.

Regardless of sector, investors are seeking opportunities to access new products, services, technologies – and talent. “Interestingly we see a significant level of consolidation M&A activity happening across fragmented sectors in the Irish market, including nursing homes, veterinary practices, insurance brokers,” he adds.

Global deal valuations soared during 2021, and valuations in Ireland were no different.

“Competition for high-quality Irish assets has intensified given the amount of dry powder in PE firms and interest from well-capitalised strategic corporates. Both investor types are seeking growth opportunities – not value – and there are many strong indigenous Irish business that meet their criteria,” he explains.

While there has been no one “standout Brexit impact” on transaction activity, BDO has seen a greater effort in transaction due diligence reviews to understand a business’s customer base and supply chain and the implications of Brexit on them. “Investors need to clearly understand the implication on the business from Brexit in accessing the European or UK market,” he says.

Content adapted from The Irish Times.