11 Transformative M&A Deals You Should Care About

The M&A market is expected to heat up this year. Here are 11 noteworthy merger-and-acquisition stories we're following.

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2021 could be a strong year of mergers and acquisitions (M&A).

Last year was a strange one for dealmaking. 2020 started out riding the momentum of a robust fourth quarter in 2019, with several deals topping $10 billion or more. But once the COVID-19 pandemic hit, M&A activity dried up as companies of all sizes figured out what needed to be done to keep their businesses liquid.

In the first two months of 2020, the average number of M&A deals per month was 291. That fell to 236 between March and June, before jumping to 379 in the second half of the year. That works out to a monthly average of 317 merger-and-acquisition deals done last year, just slightly behind the 335 transactions done, on average, per month in 2019.

However, Morgan Stanley analysts believe 2021 will be a more fruitful year for M&A action.

"Companies are more comfortable allocating capital now than earlier in the pandemic. M&A remains one of the most attractive ways for them to achieve growth, making 2021 another potentially busy year," says Brian Healy, co-head of Mergers & Acquisitions (Americas) at Morgan Stanley.

With capital costs incredibly low, a rebounding economy post-vaccine and a need to digitize businesses to protect against the next coronavirus, CEOs may feel the need to acquire other companies to meet their growth and operational requirements.

At the same time, stock prices remain relatively overvalued, suggesting that many of the merger-and-acquisition deals in 2021 could be all-stock transactions. Six out of the 10 transactions in this article involve some use of stock. Investors can expect more of the same as we move into summer and fall.

That said, let's take a look at 11 noteworthy M&A deals that investors should be focused on in 2021.


Data is as of May 12.

Will Ashworth
Contributing Writer, Kiplinger.com

Will has written professionally for investment and finance publications in both the U.S. and Canada since 2004. A native of Toronto, Canada, his sole objective is to help people become better and more informed investors. Fascinated by how companies make money, he's a keen student of business history. Married and now living in Halifax, Nova Scotia, he's also got an interest in equity and debt crowdfunding.