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The Biggest M&A Deals so Far in 2016… And What They Reveal About the Mid-Market


Every year billions of dollars in mergers and acquisitions take place. 2015 was the biggest year ever for mergers and acquisitions to date and 2016 has already seen seven “megadeals”, or deals greater than $1 billion. While most deals are fractions of this size, they can reveal insights about the mid-market level.

The number of megadeals is on the rise – the first quarter of 2016 alone saw some of the largest M&A deals in the past few years. This is telling of the mid-market sector too, as deals in this space continue to grow in number. At the mid-market level, dealmakers also expect to increase their number of acquisitions in 2016, which we saw happening late last year as market volume picked up in the final months of 2015.

For large deals, healthcare and technology vied for the No. 1 sector, which jives with the mid-market, as these two industries as especially active when it comes to consolidation and M&A activity.

Deals both mega and mid-size happened when the company for sale was positioned properly. Using strategic advisors was critical in ensuring the deal’s terms were agreeable to both parties. The use of accountants, lawyers, financial advisors, M&A consultants, and other experts was consistent for deals both large and small.

Without further ado, here is a roundup of the top megadeals so far in 2016:

1. $32 Billion Shire plc mergers with Baxalta Incorporated

In early January, the board of directors from Shire plc and Baxalta Incorporated agreed to merge the two companies. This merge marks the creation of the global leader in rare diseases and projects that the company will earn over $20 billion in annual revenues by 2020.

 2. $15 Billion Apollo acquisition of ADT Corp

After much negotiation, ADT has agreed to sell to Apollo. With the acquisition, Apollo plans to then merge ADT with Protection 1 and ASG Security to create a company with annual revenue greater than $4.2 billion.

 3. $10.2 Billion TransCanada acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group

In March, TransCanada announced a natural gas acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group for $13 billion. The all cash deal makes the Canadian company one of the largest distributors of natural gas in the northeastern United States.

4. $11.3 Billion Fortis acquisition of ITC Holdings

In February, Canada’s Fortis announced the acquisition of ITC Holdings, a U.S. based electricity-transmission company, for $11.3 billion. In the deal Fortis plans to retain all ITC employees and Fortis will continue to operate as a stand-alone company.

5. $6 Billion Virginia’s Dominion acquisition of Questar

In February, Virginia-based Dominion Resources acquired Questar Corp. to make one utility giant. The combined entity will serve 2.5 million electric customers and 2.3 million gas customers from Virginia to Utah.

6. $3.8 Billion Comcast acquires DreamWorks Animation

In April, Philadelphia-based Comcast proposed to acquire DreamWorks Animation studio. Comcast plans to make DreamWorks part of the Universal Filmed Entertainment Group and sees this acquisition as an opportunity to expand the company.


While you may not be working on the next megadeal, Symmetrical provides a full range of services to middle market companies, and is here to advise you whether you are thinking about selling your company, buying another, or simply need to see more opportunities for your fund or family office.

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