122 deals involving UK companies took place in March, according to Zephyr, with a third of these deals being from cross border acquirers.
The highest deal value of the month was the acquisition of Battersea Project Phase 2 Company Ltd by PNB-Kwasa International 2 Ltd for £1.6 billion. PNB-Kwasa first announced their interest in the UK based real estate holding company in December 2018, with the deal completing mid-March. Speaking on the deal, Battersea Project Holding chairman Datuk Ahmad Pardas Senin said
“We are delighted that this reorganisation has concluded, giving this iconic landmark a sound footing for the future and ensuring it is expertly curated and managed in the longer term.”
At the start of the month, Digitalbox plc, a digital media firm acquired Bath-based satirical news site, Mashed Productions Ltd for £1.2 million.
The media sector continued to do well in March as reach4entertainment enterprises Ltd completed the acquisition of arts and entertainment advertising company Agency Press Ltd, trading as Sold Out for £10 million. London-based music licensing company, Big Sync Music Ltd was acquired by American Songtradr Inc.
The leisure and hospitality sector saw a number of deals within the month of March. Darwin (North West) Ltd, a Welsh leisure operator acquired its first resort in Scotland. Dundonald Links Golf Club, a Championship golf course in Ayrshire has hosted many Scottish Open tournaments over the years and was bought for £4.5 million. Lindsey Esse, Managing Director of Darwin (North West) said
“We are delighted to have acquired our first resort in Scotland and for it to be the prestigious Dundonald Links, which is much loved by golfers around the world.”
Queensgate Investments LLP acquired four of Globalgrange Ltd’s London hotels in a deal worth £1 billion. Grange St Paul’s, Grange Tower Bridge, Grange City and Grange Holborn are the four upscale London hotels acquired in the deal.
Online fashion retailer Boohoo group plc acquired UK-based MissPap USA Ltd’s brand. Boohoo Group Chief Executive John Lyttle said
“MissPap is a brand with great potential which can leverage the group’s expertise.”
Online bingo company 888 Holdings plc acquired JPJ Group plc’s Mandalay operating business for £18 million. Costa Bingo, City Bingo and Sing Bingo were all a part of the deal and already appeared on 888’ Dragonfish platform.
Overall, a wide range of sectors saw activity this month, with a significant number of high-value deals completing. The interest in UK companies continues to come from both UK and overseas acquirers, with trade buyers and private equity investors making acquisitions.
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