Average deal values in Guernsey on the rise, says Appleby

19 May 2014

Statistics from Appleby show that offshore deal values increased 79% in the first quarter of 2014 when compared to the same period last year and was the highest it's been since the end of 2012.

The latest edition of Offshore-i, the firm's quarterly report which provides data and insight on merger and acquisition activity in major offshore financial centres, has observed a considerable uptick in deal size.

There were 36 deals involving Guernsey targets in Q1 2014 worth US$1.9bn. When compared to the first quarter of 2013, the jurisdiction's average deal value increased from US$35 million to US$54 million and total deal value remained steady, decreasing a slight 2%, while the total number of deals was down from the 57 recorded in the same quarter one year earlier.

"Average deal size across jurisdictions this quarter is among the highest we have recorded in the past seven years, a trend we are seeing in Guernsey where average deal size is up 54% from this time last year," said Jeremy Berchem, Corporate and Commercial Group Partner in Guernsey.

"Taken as a whole, this is the clearest sign yet of a new depth to the market, as investors become ever-more willing to put money to work on larger transactions."

Overall, there were 572 offshore deals in Q1 2014, down from the previous quarter but busier than the first quarter of 2013, which saw 528 deals. Though there were fewer deals, deal value came in at USD62.9bn-up 14% on the previous quarter and marking the fifth consecutive quarter for cumulative deal value growth.

This quarter's average deal size of US110m is the highest in the past seven years, aside from the anomalous final quarter of 2012 when a single USD56bn transaction caused average deal values to spike. Additionally, total deal value in Q1 2014 has been topped only twice since the beginning of 2008.

Cameron Adderley, Partner and Global Head of Corporate & Commercial, said: "The most significant conclusion to be drawn from the quarter's figures is that we've turned a corner away from a difficult five years following the global financial crisis. The number of deals in Q1 2014 was down compared to the previous quarter as expected, but total deal value and average deal size were up, setting the stage for a busy 2014."

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