Retail M&A Grew in 2020, With More Deals Expected in 2021

Total value of 2020 deals outstripped 2019, and there's plenty of liquidity among major players

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Despite the pandemic—or perhaps in part because of it—the total value of U.S. retail deals transacted in 2020 was about $36 billion, nearly triple the $13.9 billion tallied in 2019.

That growth came after year-over-year declines in both 2018 and 2019, according to corporate law firm White & Case, which compiled the data in partnership with M&A insights tool Mergermarket, a product of financial news and data company Acuris.

But that increase doesn’t tell the full story for the retail sector’s 2020: A deal is still considered as an acquisition no matter what sort of business a company is purchasing—a healthy one, or one out of bankruptcy.

The latter scenario was the case for a number of retailers felled by the pandemic, which included Brooks



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