Wolf Theiss

WOLF THEISS Corporate Monitor HY/2 2013

We are delighted to announce that the second edition of the INSIDE CORPORATE – WOLF THEISS CORPORATE MONITOR report was published on February 6, 2014 in cooperation with Mergermarket, a leading global intelligence and news service for mergers and acquisitions. The successful publication project of Practice Group Corporate / M&A, INSIDE CORPORATE is a study of M&A activity - alongside macroeconomic and legal developments - in Central, Eastern and South Eastern Europe (CEE and SEE). Drawing from extensive data on CEE/SEE M&A trends, the report offers insight into the economic, political and legal challenges and opportunities facing the region, as well as the outlook for 2014

One of the key findings of the report is that 2013 saw the CEE region collectively produce 475 deals worth €27.9bn, marking a 10% increase in volume and a 56% increase in value from 2012. “In 2013, M&A activity in Central and Eastern Europe picked up significantly from the levels of previous years, despite a still somewhat difficult economic and political environment in many parts of the region generally, and the Eurozone in particular,” said Dieter Spranz, partner at Wolf Theiss’ Vienna office. “This development, and the typical deal drivers we have recently seen, give us some reason to take a cautiously optimistic outlook in 2014 for M&A in this part of the world.” Elaine Green, Senior Deputy Editor, Mergermarket, added: “Poland and the Czech Republic are benefiting from the cautious optimism in the Eurozone. An example of a would-be PE deal is T-Mobile Czech Republic (TMCR), which is being primed for an exit by sponsor Mid Europa, as reported by Mergermarket. However currency fluctuations are a concern in some parts of the region such as Hungary where foreign investors are tending to shy away. IT and agriculture could see some attractive low-priced targets, however.” Other key findings from the report include:

§ The past year has seen a sizeable portion of large-scale M&A driven by foreign buyers. Netherlands-based PPF Group made two of the year’s priciest acquisitions, paying €2.5bn for a 65.9% stake in Telefonica O2 Czech Republic and €1.3bn for a 25% stake in Czech financial services company Generali PPF Holding.

§ Sector trends: The TMT sector accounted for 32.5% of total CEE deal value in 2012-2013 – up from 19.8% in the period from 2008-2011. According to Mergermarket’s Heat Chart, which logs the number of “company for sale” stories announced over the past six months, the consumer and industrials and chemicals sectors – which were the busiest by volume in 2012-2013 - are both generating the highest volume of potential M&A targets going into 2014 (95 and 90 respectively).

Regarding legal developments, the new Civil Codes in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania stand out and we have therefore dedicated our main legal article to this topic. As in the previous edition, we again shed some light on country specific macroeconomic (provided by CEEMEA) as well as legal developments.

The Wolf Theiss editor team comprised partners Ron Given, Ancuta Leach, Tomas Rychly, Siegfried Seewald, Dieter Spranz, Harald Stingl, Luka Tadic-Colic, Janos Toth and PG coordinator Viktoria Molnar.


Dieter Spranz
Luka Tadić-Čolić
János Tóth

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