The United States and France buy Spain from us

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Integral service around a transaction
BY : Diego GutiérrezOctober Fri, 2013

According to TTR, the United States and France lead the ranking of the countries with the highest number of Spanish company acquisitions during the third quarter of 2013.

Investment volume doubles compared to the previous quarter

During the third quarter of 2013, the number of transactions recorded in Spain fell by 8% compared to the second quarter of the year, although it managed to improve on the third quarter of 2012 by 14%. The volume of investment, meanwhile, doubled this quarter compared to the period between April and June to EUR 9,518m, an amount 28% higher than in the third quarter of 2012.

"The increase in the volume invested is mainly due to the divestments that we are finally seeing in the financial sector as a result of the need to generate liquidity on their balance sheets. This is the case, for example, of BBVA, which so far this year has divested the Chilean insurer AFP Provida for some EUR 1,359m and the Mexican pension fund manager Afore Bancomer for some EUR 1,329m. There have also been large divestments in another Spanish reference sector such as construction and infrastructure, such as in the aviation sector, where Ferrovial, through its investee Heathrow Airport Holding, has sold Stansted Airport for EUR 2,086m" comments Diego Gutierrez, corporate finance expert at Abra Invest.

The United States and France lead the ranking of countries buying from Spain

The United States, France, the United Kingdom and Germany have maintained their interest in the Spanish market in the third quarter of 2013, consolidating their position as the main buyers of Spanish companies so far this year.

Among the US companies that have decided to invest in Spain is the Bruckman, Rosser, Sherrill & Co (BRS) fund, which has taken a EUR 100m stake in the 100% of Spanish arms manufacturer Gamo, owned by the MCH Private Equity fund for 80% and the Casas family for 20%.

In addition, French audiovisual production company Banijay Group has acquired the entirety of Spanish production company DLO Producciones, while French pharmaceutical company Naturex has acquired 100% of Spanish essential ingredients producer Natraceutical Industrial, a hitherto subsidiary of Natraceutical. The British advertising group Aegis Media has acquired a majority stake in the Spanish advertising company Ymedia.

Internet and food are preferred sectors for M&A.

The activity of M&A activities in Spain during the first nine months of 2013 was particularly active in the technology sector, where Internet companies accounted for more than half of the deals registered. The venture capital firm Wayra, owned by the telecommunications company Telefónica, has contributed to this, making numerous investments in several European and Latin American countries. In addition, Telefónica also acquired the 10% stake it did not already control in the Tuenti social network for some EUR 12m, making it its sole shareholder.

So far this year, the food industry has also been involved in numerous business deals. Among the most active companies is Spain's Ebro Foods, which has increased its international exposure in less than four months after acquiring 100% of Indian rice producer Taraori Rice Mills Private for EUR 11.12m in April and 25% of Italian rice producer Riso Scotti for EUR 18m in August. The financial sector continues to stand out as one of the most active sectors due to the share reorganisation processes being carried out by Spanish financial institutions.

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