Bonanza in hi-tech mergers

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The Independent Online
THE VALUE of mergers and acquisitions in the global computer, telecommunications and media sectors almost doubled in 1998 as consolidation among the world's hi-tech industries gathered pace, according to a report published today, writes Peter Thal Larsen.

Broadview, the M&A consultancy specialising in technology, calculates that the total value of hi-tech deals reached $500bn last year - up 87 per cent from 1997, when it was $262bn.

Mega-mergers between US telecom giants - including the merger of former Baby Bells SBC and Ameritech, as well as Bell Atlantic and GTE - accounted for almost half of the value of hi-tech M&A deals around the world.

The report also shows a growing interest in technology in Europe, with the number of hi-tech flotations on this side of the Atlantic rising above the number in the US. During 1998, 155 technology companies floated on European exchanges, compared with 147 in the US.

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