March Madness Hits Deals

Crazy may be hitting the M&A market. Deals in March slowed down but transaction values jumped.

So far this month, there have been 362 U.S. announced transactions, totaling $39.2 billion, according to data from Thomson Reuters. This compares to 653 deals for all of March 2012 that were valued at $37.7 billion, Thomson Reuters says. Compared to last year, there were fewer deals as of March 22 but transaction value has increased. We also still have a week left of March to go.

The month’s biggest deal occurred in real estate. American Realty Capital Properties made a $5.7 billion offer for Cole Credit Property Trust III. TR is valuing the deal at $8.3 billion. A Cole Credit special committee reviewed the American Reality offer and rejected it, Reuters is reporting.

A similar phenomenon is occurring on the private equity side. There have been 59 PE-backed deals so far in March, valued at $8 billion, Thomson Reuters says. This compares to last year when there were 166 transactions, totaling $7.4 billion.

Here’s the top 5 PE deals this month, according to Thomson Reuters (publisher of peHUB).

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

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[slide title=”5. First States”]

In fifth place is a real estate deal. Earlier this month, National Financial Realty and Oaktree Capital Management acquired a portfolio of 40 office properties from First States Investors B L.P. for $240.9 million, according to Commercial Property Executive.

[slide title=”4. Hot Topic”]

The month’s fourth biggest deal comes from Sycamore Partner. The PE firm founded by former Golden Gate executives agreed to buy Hot Topic, a teen retailer, for about $600 million or $14 a share.

Hot Topic started out in 1988 selling music-inspired accessories but now offers clothing like Twilight T-shirts and skeleton leggings. The company also owns Torrid, which sells clothing, lingerie and accessories for “young, voluptuous women” size 12 and up.

[slide title=”3. Dominion Resources”]

In third place is Dominion Resources’ deal to sell three power plants – one in Massachusetts and two in Illinois – to funds controlled by private equity firm Energy Capital Partners, Reuters reported.

The sale is expected to close in the second quarter of 2013 and generate after-tax proceeds of about $650 million, including cash tax benefits, Dominion said in a statement.

[slide title=”2. AmerisourceBergen”]

This week, Walgreens and Alliance Boots announced two deals with AmerisourceBergen. One is 10-year distribution deal between Amerisource and Walgreens/Alliance. This agreement gives Walgreens and Alliance the right to take a 23% stake in AmerisourceBergen. Each deal is valued at about $1 billion, TR says.

Walgreens last year acquired a 45% stake in Alliance Boots for $6.7 billion. The deal provided a partial exit for KKR, acquired Alliance Boots in 2007 for $2.45 billion.

[slide title=”1. Gardner Denver”]

March’s biggest deal so far is Gardner Denver. Earlier this month, the industrial machinery maker agreed to sell itself to KKR for $3.74 billion, Thomson Reuters said.

Wayne, Pa.-based Gardner makes compressors, pumps and vacuum products for industrial uses.

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