Addleshaw Goddard has recorded growth in its Manchester deal activity in the two years since the Covid-19 pandemic emerged, increasing the number of transactions by 26% and 12% respectively in 2020 and 2021.
The increase in deals compared to 2019 levels include an increase in M&A activity in the retail and consumer sector at 16%, a 13% increase in the digital sector and 11% in the technology sector.
While transactions in the retail and consumer sector have reportedly remained steady since 2019, Addleshaw Goddard said there has been a “growing shift” towards digital and tech innovations in recent years.
Combined, the two sectors represented just 7% of all deal activity in 2018, rising to 24% in the last 12 months.
Additionally, while M&A activity made up a “significant proportion” of all Manchester deal activity spanning the last five years, the data reportedly reveals an increasing demand for businesses seeking legal expertise to list their company on a stock exchange.
However, despite deal activity remaining buoyant during the pandemic, the number of deals in the healthcare sector has declined, dropping from 28% in 2018 to just 5% in 2021.
The firm said this is “a trend indicative of a sector that has been at the forefront in leading a response to Covid-19”.
Roger Hart, M&A partner at Addleshaw Goddard, said: “Manchester businesses have shown their mettle in what has been a testing time for many firms, and the uptick in deal activity reflects the entrepreneurial spirit of this vibrant, thriving city.
“The key trend to emerge from this data is the increase in activity around digital and tech innovations – a trend which we’re expecting to continue. While the UK establishes its position outside of the EU, Manchester remains a vital cog in the UK’s commercial network, and we’re delighted to support clients in multiple ventures.”