Research reveals record technology deal activity in 2021

A new report has revealed record-breaking number of technology mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in the first quarter of 2021.

Tech deal activity was up 28 per cent compared to the previous year, with 268 deals announced, according to a new report.

Investment bank ICON Corporate Finance, which produced the report, said that there is a particularly ‘huge appetite’ for FinTech which could easily surpass the UK total of 711 M&A deals completed in 2020.

ICON believes that digital transformation across all industry sectors, including FinTech will continue to accelerate, boosted by overseas investors.

The research found that last year a record-breaking 48 per cent of all UK deals involved cross-border backing, a figure which could yet be surpassed in 2021.

The FinTech sector has seen a number of recent notable deals, including the sale of Parmenion to PE house Preservation Capital Partners for £102 million.

The first quarter also saw big fund raising activity for challenger bank Starling, raising over £270 million.

Zego, which specialises in InsurTech raised £30 million, and Stripe, which focusses on online payments, raised $600 million at an extraordinary valuation of $95bn.

Manchester-based, Matillion also closed $100 million Series D funding round led by Lightspeed Venture Partners.

"It's remarkable that this quarter was the busiest ever, given lockdown 2.0,” said Brian Parker, head of M&A at ICON Corporate Finance. “It’s another great example of digital acceleration improving productivity, with record numbers of deals closing, despite buyers and sellers not being able to meet."

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