The Australian M&A market has had an interesting year. Despite the world locking down and masking up, Australia’s merger and acquisition activity did not slow during FY2021.

Following the initial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and level of uncertainty in the market, we saw M&A activity drop in Q4 of FY2020.

The last financial year saw increased certainty on how Australia would live with COVID (prior to the late June 2021 lockdown in Sydney). Many individuals increased savings as a result of strict restrictions, governments pumped cash into the business economy at unprecedented rates and banks continued to provide access to cheap capital. As a result, we saw resilience in local and global markets as deal activity increased during FY2021.

Interestingly, the number of transactions in FY2021 is comparable to the prior year before COVID-19 but did not reach the transaction sizes seen during calendar year 2019. During the 2021 financial year there was a slight increase in the number of deals from 1,191 to 1,207, although there was an overall decrease in the transaction size from $113.2 million in FY2020 to $88.6 million in FY2021.

This M&A Annual Report analyses deal volume, pricing and industries, as well as providing an overview of deal activity in the SME space and highlighting some of the deals the HLB Mann Judd Sydney advisory team assisted with. M&A Annual Report highlights key deals that happened in the last 12 months as well as insights as to what the year ahead holds for transactions.