Economy/Tourism.- Tourism mergers and acquisitions exceed pre-pandemic levels

M&A activity by tourism companies has exceeded pre-pandemic levels. Thus, between 2022 and until the third quarter of this year, a total of 423 companies changed hands, compared to 389 between 2018 and until the third quarter of 2019.

In total, the purchases and mergers of tourism companies in the last decade have involved a capital movement of 212,000 million dollars (194,000 million euros), confirming their upward trend, according to data from the tourism investment bank Cambon Partners and the travel research company Videc.

Both companies have published the first industry tracker covering global travel mergers and acquisitions, which shows that during the period 2014 to the third quarter of 2023, a total of 1,758 travel companies were sold. The total value of the 382 operations for which valuations are available amounts to 212 billion dollars.

Europe (42%) and North America (38%) remain the hotbeds of M&A activity over the past decade.

Data suggests that Europe is the most active region for M&A in the travel sector, with 212 deals (2022-Q3 2023) compared to 154 deals before the pandemic (2018-Q3 2019).

Among the categories, hospitality is the one that sets the trend, with 149 operations compared to 125 in the pre-pandemic period. Technology has also been boosted with deals for software vendors growing to 107 deals from 65.

Experts assure that the pandemic has especially given a boost to issues related to profitability and sustainability. The B2B category is a natural beneficiary of this trend, with a total of 151 deals increasing to 219 after the pandemic.

Along the same lines, mergers and acquisitions related to corporate travel have also become the star product of the season, with the number of agreements that has doubled to reach 25 after the pandemic.

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