Private Equity in UK Hits 13-Year Low in Q4 2008

According to a study by the Centre for Management Buyout Research (CMBOR) that was sponsored by Barclays Private Equity, total deal value in the UK private equity market (Europe’s largest PE market) dropped to its lowest level in over 13 years in Q4 2008.  The value of buyouts reached just £994m in Q4 2008, substantially off the £5.7bn total from a year prior, and well behind the £5.6bn in Q3 2008. 

Dramatic decreases were seen in all value ranges. In the sub-£10m bracket, deal value fell by 41% compared to Q3.  Deals in the £10-£100m range dropped an unsightly 59% over the the same quarter to quarter time frame. And the winner for biggest drop off a cliff goes to deals in the £100-500m range, which had a ghastly 78% decline versus the previous quarter.

2008 private equity deal values for the UK tentatively totalled £19.1bn and volume came in at 549 deals, down from 2007’s record figure of £45.9bn on 671 deals.

Don’t look for things to pick up in the first-half of 2009 either.

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