The global financial crisis has temporarily slowed the Polish M&A market, but experts foresee a host of Opportunities on the way.

The volume of mergers and acquisitions in Poland varied considerably over the course of 2008. Although HI looked relatively strong in this area, the global crisis brought about a radical decrease in the number of M&A transactions.

"The best part of the several dozen transactions in 2008 were carried out in H1," said Beata Gessel-Kalinowska, a managing partner in the Gessel law firm and an expert in M&As. She added that H1 2008 was comparable to the same period in 2007 in terms of volume (...)

The biggest deals 
(...) Both Nowacki, a manager in Ernst & Young's M&A Team and Gessel-Kalinowska described Enterprise Investors' purchase of a 43-percent stake in beverage-producer Kofola-Hoop as the key transaction in the private equity sector. In industries, consolidation deals included the takeovers of clothing firm Artman by LPP and software-producer ABG by Asseco Group. The merger of steel-and-construction-group Konsorcjum Stali with Bodeko, and the tie-up of upscale grocer Bomi with Rasta were also significant, Nowacki said (...)

Slow, but not stopped 
The situation changed in autumn when the global financial crisis struck, however, and M&A deals practically disappeared. "This was all the more visible on the private equity sector," Gessel-Kalinowska said.

But she also suggested that the impact of the global slowdown in the M&A market would soon wane, noting that business expects that the volume of transactions will inerease within a couple of months when the expectations of buyers and sellers begin to converge again (...)

Konrad Kiedrzyński, Warsaw Business Journal