A major US group with a subsidiary in Copenhagen plans to expand its business operations in Denmark and is looking to acquire companies in the IT, media or communication industry located in Jutland, writes financial daily newspaper Børsen. The US group has hired consultancy company LNP Corporate Finance to help find acquisition prospects.
Jan Larsen, partner and managing director of LNP Corporate Finance confirms the US group's interest in buying firms in Jutland, especially in the Århus area. "For good reasons, I cannot disclose who the US company is. But it is a group generating billions of kroner which wants to grow in Denmark via acquisitions. Now we will start scanning the market for companies that could be a good match for our customer. We expect one to two acquisitions before the end of the year."
This year, LNP Corporate Finance has mediated five company deals in Denmark, Norway and Sweden, and forecasts this figure will grow to at least ten. Jan Larsen says to Børsen that the international financial crisis and the prospect of lower growth has so far not noticeably weakened interest in acquisition of niche-oriented and profitable SMEs.
"It is no secret however that the players in the market are slightly more nervous than normally. Company prices have also been at an unrealistically high level. Now buyers can see that sellers are willing to negotiate deals at a lower level than it was just six months ago," says Jan Larsen.
This does not mean however that companies will be traded at lower prices than hitherto. Much depends on the company's value to the buyer and general business conditions in the industry. Companies that LNP Corporate Finance assist are usually sold at prices far below DKK 100m (USD 20.9m) per deal.