Key M&A trends of the past 10 years in Belgium

The M&A Monitor has reached its 10th edition. Time to look at the main evolutions of the acquisition market and what are the main future trends.

Rising trend in multiples: in 2013 the average multiple (enterprise value/EBITDA) was 5,1 in 2023 it was evolved to 6,7.  

Further professionalising of M&A advice: there is a general consensus that professional support is increasingly being used in M&A deals.

Focus on revenue growth: acquirers are increasingly looking for companies that can help them achieve long-term revenue growth rather than cost-saving efficiencies.

M&A market is seller friendly: Due to the recent good economic situation, there was a strong demand for companies open for acquisition.

Belgian acquirers on foreign acquisition path: There is a trend that Belgian entrepreneurs are increasingly taking their chances abroad.

What are the main expected trends for the coming years?

Proactive dealmaking: Mergers and acquisitions will become even more an integral part of a company's growth strategy rather than an opportunistic phenomenon.

Active reliance on data analytics: prospective acquirers will increasingly rely on data analytics to identify and close potential deals.

Looking for acquisition targets beyond the Belgian border: Belgian acquirers will more actively look beyond the borders for potential deals.

A clear strategy on environmental factors when making acquisition decisions: environment and climate will play an important role in making acquisition decisions.

 Bron: M&A Monitor 2023-Vlerick Business School
image source: