Covid-19: Some US firms say acquisition prospects rebounding from pandemic

by Marc Selinger

Executives at several US-based companies said this month that their acquisition opportunities are starting to recover from the effects of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.

The flag of the United States. (Credit: Getty Images)

The flag of the United States. (Credit: Getty Images)

John Heller, president and CEO of PAE, said his government services company began to see a “severe reduction or pullback” in acquisition activity in mid-March, as potential sellers were forced to focus on surviving the pandemic and the economic downturn it produced. But as the economy has improved and as companies have adjusted to doing business in the Covid-19 environment, potential sellers have re-emerged.

Since July, “there’s been a dramatic shift, and we’ve seen a large number of opportunities come to market, several of which look very attractive to the PAE strategy,” Heller said. “We’re definitely involved in examining those.”

Susan Lynch, chief financial officer at Vectrus, said her government services company also saw the acquisition pipeline dry up, as the pandemic was expected to reduce business valuations. Now that valuations have stabilised, the pipeline has refilled itself.

“There’s actually a number of targets that we’re looking at,” Lynch said. “And we’ll be looking at a number of them very closely. And hopefully, there’ll be one that’ll be a match for us at the right price.”

 

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