DACH M&A Overview 2014 – 2017

Andrea Deutschmanek

General overview

Over a three year period from January 2014 to January 2017 there were 797 tech-focused mergers and acquisitions with the target company headquartered in either Germany, Austria or Switzerland, for a combined worth of $58.1 billion. Transaction volume has stayed remarkedly stable over the last three years.


Intra-Europe deals most common while Germany sees high levels of domestic deal activity

European acquirers (including those from the DACH region) are by far the largest buyer group within the DACH region, accounting for 55-64% of buyers that acquired a DACH target. Domestic transactions are particularly common in Germany, with  29% of German companies bought by a German buyer between 2014 and 2017 versus 11% in Austria and 18% in Switzerland.




Targets are primarily located in big cities in the DACH region

The majority of DACH targets are headquartered within one of the region’s large cities, with the region’s top 10 cities in terms of transaction volume accounting for 56% of the region’s transactions.




Berlin is leading the chart by a large margin, with 76 deals observed between 2014 and 2016. This leaves a large gap with the runner up, with Munich coming in with 46 deals. The following heat map shows additional hotspots in the region, such as the Rhein-Ruhr area and the Frankfurt area.  On the map, the size and intensity of the radius corresponds to the number of announced deals in a given location:

Urban targets have more employees

The largest targets in terms of average employee count are located in urban centers such Frankfurt and Stuttgart, with some larger targets appearing around Osnabruck, Bielefeld and Jena as well.



Targets headquartered in leading cities command high EV/S multiples

Berlin not only leads in terms of transaction volume, but acquirers also appear to strongly value Berlin based companies as shown on the following heatmap. Companies based in Karlsruhe and Geneva were also sold at high EV/S multiples.