Baker Tilly: SMEs eyeing cut-price acquisitions

Owner-managed companies are planning an acquisition spree over the next three
years in the hope of snapping up bargains amid the economic downturn, a survey
has found.

Almost three quarters of owner-managed companies questioned by Baker Tilly
said they planned to make an acquisition or establish a joint venture with
former competitors within the next three years.

But despite speculation of a tentative recovery in the economy, more than
half of more than 300 board directors said they expected to make further
redundancies and expect a further drop in sales in the coming year.

Rob Donaldson, head of M&A and private equity at Baker Tilly said: ‘Large
firms are often better capitalised and in a stronger position to cope with a
slow down. However, on the flipside, smaller firms can be more nimble and
quicker at adapting to changing economic conditions. It is those in the middle
that need to consider where they can tighten up and improve efficiency for their
ongoing success.’

The survey questioned companies with a turnover of between £5m and £50m in
various industry sectors.

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