This site uses cookies to provide you with a more responsive and personalised service. By using this site you agree to our use of cookies. Please read our privacy statement for more information on the cookies we use and how to delete or block them.

‘Steady as she goes’ for M&A market with healthy profile of deal volumes

06 November 2019

The M&A market saw a steady profile of deal volumes throughout 2019, fluctuating by less than 3% quarter on quarter, according to the latest analysis of M&A transactions from accountancy and business advisory firm BDO LLP.

BDO’s PCPI / PEPI* quarterly report shows that overall deal volumes rose by 2.6% in Q3, with 596 transactions. Trade deal volumes, which account for over 80% of market activity, have held firm in the quarter, with 488 deals completing in Q3 2019. Meanwhile, private equity activity has continued to accelerate in the year, rising from 90 deals in Q1, to 96 in Q2 and 108 in Q3. The rise represents an increase of 6.7% in Q2 and 12.5% in Q3.

The Private Company Price Index (PCPI) and Private Equity Price Index (PEPI), which track the multiples paid by trade and private equity buyers for private companies, underline the health of the current M&A market. The PEPI, which reflects private equity valuation multiples, saw a small fluctuation to 11.8x from a multiple of 12.2x in Q2, maintaining the steady profile seen throughout the last 18 months. Meanwhile trade valuations recorded a slight dip in the quarter, demonstrated by the PCPI decrease to 9.6.x in Q3 2019 (from 10.4x in Q2 2019).

Roger Buckley, M&A Partner at BDO, commented: “There has been a reduction in mega-deals this year which has grabbed the headlines, but there is actually a huge amount of deal making going on and the mid-market continues to see high levels of deal activity. Despite geopolitical headwinds, we see a robust M&A mid-market as organisations and entrepreneurs ‘get on with it’ - doing what they need to do to build great businesses.”


*Private Company Pricing Index / Private Equity Pricing Index

Note to editors

Accountancy and business advisory firm BDO LLP provides integrated advice and solutions to help businesses navigate a changing world.

Our clients are Britain’s economic engine – ambitious, entrepreneurially-spirited and high-growth businesses that fuel the economy. 

We share our clients’ ambitions and their entrepreneurial mind-set. We have the right combination of global reach, integrity and expertise to help them succeed. 


BDO LLP operates in 17 locations across the UK, employing nearly 5,000 people offering tax, audit and assurance, and a range of advisory services. BDO LLP is the UK member firm of the BDO international network.

BDO’s global network

The BDO global network provides business advisory services in 162 countries, with 80,000 people working out of 1,600 offices worldwide. It has revenues of $9bn.


Roger Buckley
M&A Partner, BDO
+44(0)121 352 6213
[email protected]

Press office:
020 7893 3000
[email protected]