The M&A market in Western Europe
is booming. Although 2016 saw a decrease in M&A transactions in both the Netherlands
and Germany, expert forecasts indicate that 2017 will see growth again that is comparable to the heights of 2015, or even beyond that.
Baker McKenzie's Global Forecast Report 2017 ranks the Netherlands as one of the most attractive countries for M&A activities, right after Hong Kong, Singapore and Switzerland. Taking into account the past activity as well as key economic, financial and regulatory factors, such as economic growth, the size of the economy and the openness towards trade, the investment climate in the Netherlands
is evaluated with a 7.3 on a scale from 1 to 10. In this regard the Netherlands scores much better than larger neighbor Germany, which is found on place 14 of Baker McKenzie's ranking.Germany
, with a population of roughly 80 million
people, is almost five times as large as the Netherlands (17 million inhabitants
). Yet the value of German domestic M&A transactions in 2016 was only twice as high as the value of the transactions in the Netherlands, and the difference between the cross-border transactions
was even smaller. This too points to the favorable investment climate in the Netherlands.
High profile M&A transactions in the Netherlands
in 2016 included the acquisition of NXP by U.S.-based Qualcomm, NN Group's takeover of Delta Lloyd and the fusion of Ziggo with Vodafone Nederland. 2017 is expected to bring only more of these M&A transactions.