The third quarter of 2016 was far from an average one. SoftBank’s takeover of UK-based ARM marked the largest ever acquisition of a European technology business.

The UK’s largest listed tech company, which employs 4,000 people, was purchased for a total of £24.3 billion (approximately €29 billion) at £17 per share by the Japanese telecom company.

That deal, along with several other smaller transactions, brought total exit volume to a record €40 billion across Europe, Israel and Turkey during Q3 2016, according data collected by That’s a whopping 113% percent increase over the same period the previous year. But not taking the ARM deal into consideration, the value of all Q3 exits was just €11 billion, only slightly over half the volume of the same quarter the previous year.

In fact, taking the SoftBank/ARM deal out of the equation would make the past quarter the second worst-performing in terms of exits since Q1 2014, at half the volume of the previous quarter (Q2 2016: €22 billion).


The number of transactions tracked rose to 180, an 8% increase over Q3 2015. That means either the average deal size has decreased, or fewer values of large transactions were disclosed. Only 22% of M&A announcements during the quarter revealed the value of the transaction. That rate is below the previous 10 quarters when, on average, 32% of transaction amounts were disclosed. No estimates of the value of undisclosed transactions are included in our calculations.

Top 20 European and Israeli tech exits in Q3 2016

Top 20 exits Q3 2016

For more information on each of the deals we have tracked since we started in 2014, and to  delve further into these numbers, please visit the data section on With a premium Dealroom membership, you can use advanced filters and export data to spreadsheets.

Also read:

European tech funding dropped 17% to €3.4 billion in Q3 2016

Connected Cars: an in-depth report on the European automotive tech sector

The State of European FinTech: A report on funding and M&A activity in 2015