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Romania's Q1 M&A market value falls - Deloitte

Romania's Q1 M&A market value falls  - Deloitte Kritchanut/

BUCHAREST (Romania), April 16 (SeeNews) - The value of Romania's mergers and acquisitions (M&A) market dropped by 36% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2018 to 258 million euro ($319 million), global consultancy Deloitte said on Monday.

The estimation was made taking into account information from public sources and transactions with a disclosed value, Deloitte said in a press release.

Counting also transactions with a still undisclosed value, the M&A market could reach 600 million euro in the first quarter of 2018.

"After the end of 2017, which was a record year, mergers and acquisitions segment was slow, but we remain optimistic about this year's prospects. We have booked a single transaction with an officially announced value of over 100 million euro during this period, compared to five in the last quarter of 2017, " Deloitte Romania merger and acquisition consultant partner Ioana Filipescu said.

In total, 19 transactions were announced in the first quarter of this year, including those whose value was not officially disclosed. In the similar period of 2017, 30 transactions had been announced. Deloitte's analysis did not take into account transactions worth less than 5 million euro each.

The biggest transaction in the first quarter of the year is considered to be the $153 million (124 million euro) Series B financing obtained by Romanian robotic process automation (RPA) startup UiPath from venture capital firm Accel Partners The funding boosted UiPath's  market value to over $1.1 billion, making it the first Romanian unicorn company. 'Unicorn' is a popular term used when a startup company is valued at over $1 billion.

"UiPath confirms the rise of the IT sector, which has been the star of the Romanian economy in recent years. We expect to see many other transactions in this field with a growing number of start-ups," Ioana Filipescu said.

Announced at the end of January, the second largest transaction of this quarter was the acquisition of Romanian ice cream producer Betty Ice by transnational consumer goods company Unilever. The transaction, whose value was not disclosed, is subject to regulatory approval by the Romanian competition authority.

The third largest transaction was the acquisition of Schweighoffer's Cascade Empire and forest management division Ocol Silvic Cascade Empire by GreenGold Asset Management. Cascade Empire owns over 14,000 hectares of forests in Romania.

Romania's M&A market grew by 15% in terms of value to an estimated 4-4.6 billion euro in 2017, according to Deloitte.

($ =0.8085 euro)