2014 Key Highlights

  • The largest private equity backed transaction in 2014 was Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. and CVC Capital Partners’ acquisition of Advantage Sales and Marketing for $4.2 billion.
  • Strategic acquisitions represented 86 percent of total volume and 73 percent of total value, respectively.

2014 Key Trends

  • Total transaction volume in 2014 increased by eight percent over 2013, from 3,652 to 3,954.
  • As for the industry’s horizontal markets, Software had the largest rise in volume with a 14 percent increase.
  • Total transaction value in 2014 rose by 38 percent over 2013, from $162.54 billion to $224.44 billion.
  • The Online and Mobile horizontal, which nearly doubled from $66.58 billion to $126.74 billion, experienced the industry’s largest improvement in value.
  • The median revenue multiple saw an uptick from 2.1x in 2013 to 2.3x in 2014. The median EBITDA multiple moved slightly from 11.2x in 2013 to 11.0x in 2014.

M&A Market Overview

Berkery Noyes tracked 11,151 Information Industry transactions between 2012 and 2014, of which 2,665 disclosed financial terms, and calculated the aggregate value to be $402.92 billion. Based on known transaction values, we project values of 8,486 undisclosed transactions to be $136.03 billion, totaling $538.94 billion worth of transactions tracked over the past three years.

Disclosed median enterprise value multiples for all segments combined in this report during the last 36 months were 2.1x revenue and 10.6x EBITDA.

Out of 11,151 deals tracked by Berkery Noyes between 2012 and 2014, transactions valued at $160 million and above garnered a median enterprise value multiple of 3.2x revenue. In contrast, companies with transaction values between $10 million and $20 million captured a median enterprise value multiple of 1.7x revenue.