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Dealmakers eye China divestments, rise of India and SE Asia as M&A pipeline shrinks

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Dealmakers eye China divestments, rise of India and SE Asia as M&A pipeline shrinks
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HONG KONG/BEIJING, Sept 30 (Reuters) – Dealmakers in Asia are betting a possible retreat of multinational companies operating in China and a rise in acquisitions in India and Southeast Asia will replenish the M&A pipeline, amid macroeconomic headwinds.

Merger and acquisition (M&A) transaction values involving China plunged by 35% year-on-year to $266 billion in the first nine months of the year, to the lowest level since 2013, Refinitiv data showed, though it remained Asia’s largest deals market.

Dealmakers eye China divestments, rise of India and SE Asia as M&A pipeline shrinks

A man walks along a wall overlooking the central Mumbai's financial district skyline
A man walks along a wall overlooking the central Mumbai’s financial district skyline, India, March 9, 2017. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui/File Photo
  • 9-month M&A values involving China hit 9-year low – Refinitiv
  • India-involved M&A values up 55% yoy in first 9 months
  • China’s COVID curbs, policy uncertainties stifle deals – bankers

HONG KONG/BEIJING, Sept 30 (Reuters) – Dealmakers in Asia are betting a possible retreat of multinational companies operating in China and a rise in acquisitions in India and Southeast Asia will replenish the M&A pipeline, amid macroeconomic headwinds.

Merger and acquisition (M&A) transaction values involving China plunged by 35% year-on-year to $266 billion in the first nine months of the year, to the lowest level since 2013, Refinitiv data showed, though it remained Asia’s largest deals market.

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M&A value was down 35% worldwide and 36% for deals involving Asia in the same period, according to Refinitiv, with the Russia-Ukraine war and global interest rate hikes causing financing costs to rise and currencies to wobble, making dealmaking challenging.

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Reuters Graphics
Reuters Graphics

China’s outlook is further clouded by the country’s strict COVID-19 curbs as well as uncertainties over its policy direction ahead of next month’s leadership reshuffle by the ruling Communist Party, bankers and lawyers said.

“A major uncertainty affecting the 2023 outlook for China-involved M&A activity is where China’s zero-COVID policy is heading, which currently lacks a clear signal,” said Jeffrey Wang, partner and co-head of the Shanghai office of investment banking adviser BDA Partners.

Alan Wang, a Shanghai-based partner at law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, said the level of market activity in China would likely remain subdued until after the first quarter next year given the uncertain domestic and global economic outlook.

“Right now, people don’t know if we hit the bottom yet,” he said. “If you were the seller, you probably wouldn’t be willing to sell because you think that there should be prospects for an improved valuation in the not-too-distant future.”

Strategic sectors including semiconductors, artificial intelligence, healthcare and new energy vehicles are likely to be among the most popular sources of deals involving Chinese companies, the bankers and lawyers added.

BEYOND CHINA

Private equity firms, the region’s major deal driver with over $500 billion of unspent capital, have pivoted from China to look at other markets in Asia, particularly India and Southeast Asia, bankers and investors said.

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Reuters Graphics
Reuters Graphics

India M&A shot up 55% by end-September to reach $145 billion, Refinitiv data showed, thanks to its largest private lender HDFC Bank Ltd’s (HDBK.NS) $40 billion acquisition of its biggest shareholder in the country’s biggest-ever deal.

Southeast Asian startups are also enjoying a boom in fundraising exercises by venture capital and buyout funds that are chasing bigger returns outside China.

Within China, dealmakers said they expected opportunities for transactions involving multinational companies as the country’s economic growth outlook remains uncertain, the zero-COVID policy hits business confidence and Sino-Western geopolitical tensions linger.

“They are reviewing what to do to their China business by either bringing a Chinese investor or exiting it,” Samson Lo, co-head of Asia Pacific M&A at UBS Group AG (UBSG.S), said of global firms.

Packaged food giant Kraft Heinz Co (KHC.O) is selling its baby food business in China, valued at around $150 million, with second-round bids due soon, said people with knowledge of the sales process. They declined to be identified because the information is confidential.

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Will the Royal Family ‘feature’ on Meghan Markle, Prince Harry’s docuseries

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Will the Royal Family feature on Meghan Markle Prince Harry’s docuseries
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Here is whether Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s docuseries will feature on the Netflix docuseries

Royal experts have finally lifted the lid on whether the Royal Family will feature in the couple’s docuseries with Netflix.

This claim has been made by Daily Mail’s Diary Editor Richard Eden, in his most recent interview with the Daily Mail.

He started off by saying, “We certainly won’t be seeing any moments with other members of the Royal Family.”

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“From what I understand, they made absolutely clear it want to have absolutely nothing to do with this programme. Further evidence of that came when Harry and Meghan came over for Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.”

“They kept a very low profile, and there wasn’t even a photograph of the Queen with baby Lilibet whose birthday was at the time apparently at the time that was made clear that the Queen wouldn’t pose for a photograph in case it happened to appear in a series like this one.”

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Priyanka Chopra, Nick Jonas share nostalgic ‘wedding’ moment on their fourth anniversary: Photos

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Priyanka Chopra, Nick Jonas share nostalgic wedding moment on their fourth anniversary Photos
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Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas set major couple goals with their ‘in love’ wishes on social media

Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas are celebrating their fourth wedding anniversary today.

The much-in-loved couple, who tied the knot in both Hindu and Christian traditions, was held in Jodhpur’s Umaid Bhawan Palace on December 1, 2018.

To mark this day, both stars share a glimpse from their wedding celebrations, giving major couple goals to fans on their anniversary.

The Quantico actress took to Instagram and posted a photo from their wedding festivity in which Priyanka looked gorgeous in a red long dress, grooving with her hubby on some Bollywood track.

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She captioned it, “Find yourself a guy that reminds you every day that you’re loved. Happy anniversary babe.”

 

 

Following her post, fans and fraternity from the industry also wished the couple. Bipasha Basu commented, “Yasss. Happy anniversary.” Dia Mirza also wrote, “Happy anniversary.”

One user said, “Congratulations dear PC and Mr. Jonas.”

On the other hand, Nick also dropped two photos on his IG handle. The first image is from their Christian wedding in which the actress looked beautiful in a white gown while the singer looks dashing in a black suit.

The second image is from their Hindu wedding where PeeCee donned a red lehenga and Nick in a golden sherwani.

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In the caption, he added, “And just like that it’s been 4 years. happy anniversary my love. @priyankachopra.”

 

 

Earlier this year, the couple welcomed their daughter Maltie Marie via surrogacy.

 

 

 

Meanwhile, on the work front, Priyanka will next be seen in interesting movies including Citadel and It’s All Coming Back To Me.

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Victoria Beckham gets candid about her ‘fantastic’ fashion moments

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Victoria Beckham gets candid about her 'fantastic' fashion moments
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Victoria Beckham recently talked with Edward Enninful

Victoria Beckham wore her heart on her sleeve to reflect on some major fashion moments of her career during her conversation with Edward Enninful.

The 48-year-old designer joked: “I am not taking responsibility for those big Spice Girls shoes! And I’d say to the girls – I did use to take up the budget.

“It was fantastic. Because their shoes were from that shop […] Buffalo, on Carnaby Street. And they just used to get them all for free,” she added.

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The Spice Girl alum also recalled her fashion moments: “There were times when we were so tired, that the more tired we were because of all the travel, the more makeup we wore. And the bigger the hair got, and the shorter the skirts and the higher the heels. We would just overcompensate.”

“Myself and David turning up to a Versace event in matching Gucci leather […] wearing the wrong designer, but you know, owning it,” she added,

“Back then, I didn’t know any better. I didn’t know the fashion industry. So there was something so sweet and naive about the fact I didn’t care. I just expressed myself in that way.,” the fashion mogul added.

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“That’s what is so great about YouTube; anything that you want to watch is so easy to find. It’s the most incredible archive.”

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