Media and telecom merger and acquisition activity in the first half of 2020 fell 19% to 259 as the industry dealt with the effects of the coronavirus, according to a new report from PwC.
The value of those deals was down 37% to $31 billion, PwC said.
PwC said that M&A could help companies deal with the disruption caused by the pandemic.
“The current economic environment will likely force companies to be a bit more introspective in identifying specific assets or businesses which they don’t believe will contribute to their earnings growth in the future. With the current crisis hitting on the heels of several years of massive consolidations, companies are sitting on various non-core assets that are ripe for divestiture,” the report said.
Companies will be looking for operation efficiencies and merging with competitors could be a strategy to help that. An atmosphere where downsizing is prevalent is likely to attract private equity investors, PwC noted.
M&A could accelerate if the government changes some of its rules, notably the FCC’s cap on TV and radio station ownership. PwC also noted that late last year, the Justice Dept. filed a motion to terminate the decrees that prevent studio ownership of movie theaters.
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Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.