Corporate acquisition activity is seeing a resurgence, signaling optimism for an uptick in the M&A market. Year-to-date, aggregate deal value exceeded the comparable period last year by more than 40 percent, supported by a solid flow of large cap deals, with September reining in Verizon-Vodafone and marking the second largest M&A deal on record.
The month saw several billion-dollar-plus transactions across diverse sectors, most notably Koch Industries-Molex in electronics; Jarden-Yankee Candle in consumer products; Packaging Corp. of America-Boise in paper and packaging; Stryker-MAKO Surgical in health care; and SKF-Kaydon in industrials. With acquisitions a primary means to return growth to shareholders, we can expect large corporates to continue to chip away at the cash stockpile on balance sheets.
The middle market is seeing steady deal flow where strong niche players continue to be attractive targets. Ohio corporates also are flexing their muscle with deal announcements in September:
RPM International Inc. of Medina acquired Exton, Pa.-based Expanko Inc. for its Performance Coatings Group. Expanko is a producer of terrazzo tile under the FritzTile brand, as well as cork, rubber and rubber/cork floor tiles serving the education, health care, hospitality and sports/entertainment markets. The company has annual sales of more than $12 million. Expanko will benefit from RPM’s marketing and distribution strength to expand beyond its strong east coast presence.
Nordson Corp. completed the acquisition of the Kreyenborg GmbH and BKG Bruckmann & Kreyenborg Granuliertechnik GmbH companies from Kreyenborg Group. The Münster, Germany-based businesses will add to Nordson’s portfolio of engineered melt stream components and enhance its ability to serve OEM machine builder customers in plastic extrusion markets, as well as bring product solutions in plastic compounding, recycling and related applications.
Akron-based A. Schulman Inc. acquired Perrite Group, a thermoplastics manufacturing business serving the electronics, appliance and niche automotive markets. With operations in Malaysia, the U.K. and France, the acquisition is expected to increase Schulman’s Asia Pacific revenues by 35 percent, and will double the size of the company's existing Engineered Plastics business in the region.
Akron Brass Co. acquired Reach Engineering LLC, a provider of specialized electronics to the emergency and industrial vehicle markets. The Wooster-based fire industry manufacturer expands its product offering with Reach, which has expertise in emergency vehicle products and services, and is recognized as an innovator of solutions specifically addressing the needs of the fire service.