Deal activity in the UK’s food and beverage sector has risen in the first quarter of the year, according to new research carried out by Grant Thornton.
This represents the sector’s highest level of quarterly deals since 2017 with 63 recorded transactions in Q1 of 2021, a 15% increase on the previous quarter and 40% from the same period last year.
The total disclosed deal value for the quarter was £1.3bn across 30 disclosed deals, with deals including the £496.5m merger of US-based Dole and Ireland’s Total Produce.
Trefor Griffith, head of food and beverage at Grant Thornton, said: “Our latest research shows that deal activity is starting to rebuild in the food and beverage sector. The start of the year saw the highest level of deal activity for four years and recorded the highest level of PE activity we have seen to date.
“With other consumer subsectors, such as hospitality and travel, temporarily out of play, food and beverage remained a haven in which to channel funds already allocated to the consumer sector. ”
He added: “Business owners cashing out ahead of an anticipated rise in Capital Gains Tax also likely added to an uptick in activity.
“While the increase did not actually emerge in the Chancellor’s March Budget, it is widely expected at some point in the future and will continue to be an important consideration for business owners.”