Citizens’ 2024 M&A Outlook revealed optimism around the environment for dealmaking activity this year, underpinned by solid expectations for the U.S. economy and a pop in enthusiasm, especially among buyers.
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In addition to upbeat expectations for the U.S. economy in the year ahead, the survey revealed several unexpected factors that could catalyze dealmaking in 2024. These include:
- PE firms look ready to shop, and AI is on the wish list: Of the private equity firms that see higher deal flow in 2024, 8 in 10 said they expect to buy more than they did in 2023 and a quarter are looking for artificial intelligence assets to add to their portfolio.
- International prospects are back on the table: After four years of declining expectations, buyer and seller interest in foreign deal partners is expected to rebound in 2024. Among midmarket companies, 51% of sellers and 44% of buyers said they would consider international deals. PE firms’ interest in international investment opportunities increased year-over-year to 55%, from 37%.
- The 2024 U.S. election could be a driver for M&A: Uncertainty regarding the outcome of the upcoming U.S. election could support dealmaking in the first half of the year. Forty-one percent of midmarket companies said the pending election makes them more likely to pursue M&A in 2024, while just 25% say it makes them less likely to pursue a deal.
For more information on this year’s Citizens Middle Market M&A Outlook, please click here.