Europe's tech businesses have 'come of age', mergers and acquisitions (M&A) advisory firm Magister Advisors concluded this morning. It bases this conclusion mostly on the number of high-profile acquisitions of European tech firms by rich Asian investors. These acquisitions, the fact that a lot of them have been in the billions of dollars, are attracting ‘historic’ amounts of capital, and are propelling European tech sector forward.
Magister Advisors expect the number of these ‘blockbuster deals’ to keep on growing. The firm gives a couple of examples: “NXP’s $45BN sale to Qualcomm, Softbank’s $35BN purchase of the UK’s ARM plc, Tencent’s $9BN acquisition of Nordic gaming.”
The best part is – all of this happened just this year. It says that the three market sectors to keep an eye out on are payments, analytics and artificial intelligence, while e-commerce, personal productivity software and ad technology is in decline. “2016 has been an unprecedented year for European tech,” commented Victor Basta, partner at Magister Advisors.
“We have seen a Nordic company founded barely six years ago, Supercell, attract $9B of cash from one of Asia’s internet giants. And one of the pillars of the mobile revolution, ARM has gone from IPO to a $35BN acquisition by Softbank in under 20 years. The exponential growth in value associated with Silicon Valley is no longer confined to Pacific Time Zone. Entrepreneurs in Europe now have home-grown models of how to create, build, and scale companies of huge value without ever leaving the European continent. 2016 will be looked on as the year the European tech industry truly came of age, poignantly in a year when the whole European experiment has been called into question.”
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