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Canada’s PE market sees record C$39.7bn deployed last year

Canada’s private equity market saw an all-time high in deployments in 2021, with C$39.7 billion flowing into 658 deals.

Canada’s private equity market saw an all-time high of deployments in 2021, with C$39.7 billion flowing into 658 deals, according to final data released by Refinitiv. Dollars invested rose 130 percent year over year and edged out the prior record of C$37.6 billion invested in 2019. The 12 largest deals, led by Brookfield Infrastructure’s acquisition of Enwave, captured 70 percent of values. The number of deals closed in 2021 represented the best year on record since 2005.

A full PDF report of 2021 Canadian private equity market activity by Refinitiv is available here.

REPORT SUMMARY

CANADA PRIVATE EQUITY BUYOUTS SET NEW ANNUAL RECORD AT C$39 BILLION

Canadian buyout and related investment reached C$39.7 billion in 658 deals during 2021, an increase of 130% in dollar terms compared to year-ago levels and the strongest annual period for buyout and related investments on record, edging out the C$37.6 billion invested in 2019. The number of deals completed in 2021 represented the best year on record since 2005.

Deal volumes and dollars invested in the fourth quarter totaled only C$6.4 billion in 180 deals, which was down 66% in deal values, and 2% in deal volumes from the previous quarter, but Q3 was itself the second-best quarter on record for buyout investment in Canadian companies.

TOP 10 ROUNDS BRING IN C$27.6 BILLION

The top twelve deals announced or completed in full year 2021 saw deal values totaling C$29.8 billion, resulting in a 70% share of all disclosed values. Ontario companies took six of the top ten deals, followed by Quebec with three of the top ten.

The largest deals of the year included Enwave Energy at C$5.2 billion, Inter Pipeline at C$5.1 billion, and Kissner Milling at C$3.9 billion, all three falling the energy & industrial sectors. Following up in the consumer sector was Great Canadian Gaming at $3.3 billion and Four Seasons at C$2.8 billion.

COMPUTER SOFTWARE & SERVICES TOTALS C$4.1 BILLION

As the computer software sector saw deal values totaling C$4.1 billion during the full year 2021, a nearly quadrupling in dollars compared to full year 2020. Industrial & energy companies, with C$17.2 billion, were up 340% as compared to the year prior.

CANADIAN BUYOUT AND RELATED FUNDRAISING UP 388%

A total of 27 Canadian buyout and related funds recorded closes during full year 2021, raising a combined C$27.2 billion in commitments, a record period for both dollars raised and number of unique funds.

Compared to a year ago, total proceeds and number of funds are up 403% and 68%, respectively, following a comparatively weak 2020. During the fourth quarter of 2021, Canadian buyout fundraising totaled C$2.4 billion in capital commitments, an 81% fall compared to the third quarter of the year.

The Brookfield Global Transition Fund was the largest buyout fund to close during full year 2021, raising C$8.8 billion in capital commitments. Whitehorse Liquidity Partners IV had the second largest volume of commitments during full year 2021, securing C$5.0 billion.

CANADIAN PE-BACKED COMPANIES COMPLETE EXITS VALUED AT C$19.5.2 BILLION

Canadian private equity-backed exits totaled C$19.5 billion from 112 completed transactions during full year 2021, a 70% increase in deal volumes, but a 13% decrease in exit values when compared to 2020 figures.