Largest M&A Deals 2013

The term Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) refers to the buying, selling, dividing and combining of different companies and similar entities by corporations, with the goal of growing more rapidly and efficiently.

It is a trend spurred by increased global integration of the economy, which requires successful corporations to operate at a multinational level.

Ranking Value
Target Name
Target Nation
Target Macro
Target Mid
Acquiror Name
1130100Verizon Wireless Inc.United StatesTelecomWirelessVerizon Communications Inc.
227361.7HJ Heinz Co.United StatesConsumer StaplesFood and BeverageInvestor Group
325531Virgin Media IncUnited StatesTelecomTelecomServicesLiberty Global Inc.
419331.1Omnicom Group Inc.United StatesMedia and
Advertising & MarketingPublicis Groupe SA
519283.8Dell IncUnited StatesHigh TechnologyComputers & PeripheralsInvestor Group
616700NBCUniversal Media LLCUnited StatesMedia and
BroadcastingComcast Group
715717.5Portugal Telecom SGPS SAPortugalTelecomTelecomServicesOi SA
815367.6Life Technologies CorpUnited StatesHealthcareBiotechnologyThermo Fisher Scientific Inc
914009Westfield Group-Australian/NZAustraliaReal EstateNon ResidentialWestfield Retail Trust
1013248.5Zoetis IncUnited StatesHealthcarePharmaceuticalsZoetis Inc
1113025.4Shoppers Drug Mart CorpCanadaRetailOther RetailingLoblaw Cos Ltd
1211708.3CDC-SME Financing BusinessFranceFinancialsOther FinancialsFrance-SME Financing Business
1311647.5Bausch & Lomb IncUnited StatesHealthcareHealthcase Equipment
& Supplies
Valeant Pharmaceuticals
1411435.1E-Plus Mobifunk GmbH & Co KGGermanyTelecomWirelessTelefonica Deutschland Holding
1510401.9Cole Real Estate InvestmentsUnited StatesReal EstateREITsAmerican Rity Capital Ppty Inc
How do these deals relate to Economic Freedom?

According to Thomson Reuters of the top largest fifteen announced M&A deals in 2013, almost half (seven) involved telecommunications, media and technology companies (TMT), three were in the health sector, two in real estate and there was one apiece for the finance and food & beverage sectors.

There were 14 TMT mega-deals (above $5 billion), the highest number since the 21 mega-transactions in 2007. Transactions valued at $10 billion and above helped to drive US M&A volume in 2013. There were 12 such deals, worth an aggregate $367.4 billion, the highest volume of mega deals since 2008’s total of $401.8 billion, accounting for 31% of total US M&A. Deals valued between $1 billion and $10 billion, meanwhile accounted for the majority of US targeted M&A, at 37% of all deals.

Europe saw a 24% increase in deals valued over $5bn. In Asia Pacific there were 81 deals valued over $1 billion in 2013.

The biggest deal of the year — and one of the biggest of all time — was Verizon’s agreement to buy out Vodafone’s 45% stake in Verizon Wireless for $130 billion. More than a decade in the making, this is the third largest corporate transaction of all time, behind AOL’s merger with Time Warner and Vodafone AirTouch’s takeover of Germany’s Mannesmann.

The second largest deal of the year and the largest ever deal in the food sector is Berkshire Hathaway and 3G Capital’s $27.4 billion acquisition of Heinz.

Third was Liberty Global’s $24 billion deal to buy UK cable-TV and broadband provider Virgin Media, creating a much stronger rival to British Sky Broadcasting. The deal is seen as a stepping stone, as Liberty Global seeks to build a European pay-TV empire.

In fourth place and one of the biggest shocks of the year was the announced advertising agency mega merger between bitter rivals Publicis and Omnicom, although the deal was called off in May 2014.

At Five, is Michael Dell, and the private equity firm Silverlake’s buyout of Dell Computers for $25 billion is seen as a bit of a steal of the company began by Michael Dell at university.

Comcast’s buyout for General Electric’s remaining stake of NBCUniversal Media for $16.7 billion is at number six, and comes two years after the Philadelphia cable TV operator acquired a 51% interest in the media company.

At seven, is Brazil’s biggest phone company Oi Sa’s merger with Portugal Telecom for $17 billion, followed by Thermo Fisher Scientific’s acquisition of Life Technologies for $13 billion.