Money manager mergers and acquisitions in the first half of 2013 totaled 73, up 10% from the first six months of 2012, with a total disclosed deal value of $8.4 billion, according to a quarterly Sandler O'Neill + Partners report issued Thursday.
About $1.31 trillion in assets under management was involved in transactions during the first half of this year, up 114% from the first half of 2012. AUM transacted in the second quarter was $641 billion and $671 billion in the first quarter.
The first half 2013 transacted AUM and disclosed deal value totals include follow-on equity offerings by private equity firms Carlyle Group and Oaktree Capital Group.
For all of 2012, there were 143 money manager transactions with a total disclosed deal value of $9.1 billion and aggregate AUM of $1.5 trillion.
There was more activity in the first quarter of this year, with 41 deals vs. 32 in the second quarter.
“There was a big backup of deals in the fourth quarter (of 2012) — the usual year-end push highlighted by fears of increased taxes, the fiscal cliff,” said Christopher Browne, managing director, in an interview. “Some of those deals rolled over into the first quarter.”
Buyers continued to make more tactical than transformational moves in the second quarter, as 72% of deal activity involved sellers managing assets of less than $10 billion, and the median target size was just over $3.2 billion in AUM.
Mr. Browne forecast a “steady increase, not a huge burst of deals” in the second half of 2013. “Consistent with what we saw in the first half, we'll see a healthy second half, with gradual growth (in M&A deals) over the next six months, assuming the markets adjust to the idea of tapering of central banks' involvement in the markets. It won't be as strong a (fourth) quarter as last year because that was a bit of an anomaly.”