According to a white paper by advisory firm Triago, private equity firms have acquired their peers in more than 150 deals since 2005, with 65% of the deals occurring in the past five years and a record of more than 25 in 2017. This according to a recent article in Institutional Investor.
The paper suggests that the consolidation is a sign that the market has “grown up,” reflecting firms’ efforts to expand their strategies and increase assets under management: “The maturity of the private equity market, combined with the diversity of LP [limited partner] profiles and investment appetites, is the catalyst of consolidation.”
Triago’s research also found that firms’ succession planning is driving deal making, with many firms offering to sell stakes as an exit strategy for aging management executives.
Of the deals tracked, Triago said that approximately half were completed by firms trying to “enhance existing strategies,” with the balance focused on expanding asset classes.
“Similarly to their portfolio companies, private equity firms will have to find ways to achieve long-term sustainable growth, retain and attract the best talent and successfully manage succession issues,” Triago wrote, adding, “M&A is a useful and increasingly accepted tool for achieving these ends.”