The IT and Telecommunications sectors have been the main source of work for Partner Lovro Gasparac’s Corporate/M&A team at Croatia's Savoric & Partners in the first half of 2020, and he expects that to continue going forward.
“The M&A team started off the year quite busy,” Gasparac reports. “We had a number of ongoing M&A projects keeping us busy and a good few ones started early in the year.” That was all “severely disrupted” by the pandemic, he says, but “now, after the summer, things seem to be coming back to normal and we hope the uncertainty won’t continue to block too many deals moving forward.”
Gasparac reports working on several ongoing international projects, especially in IT, telecommunications, and related industries. “At the beginning of the year we closed a transaction whereby Mid Europa merged its portfolio company, CMC Iletisim ve Cagri Merkezi Hizmetleri A.S., with Meritus Upravljanje d.o.o.,” he says, adding that Mid Europa is hoping to “leverage this transaction to make a bigger push into the CEE and SEE regions.”
“Another hot story” he says, was the investment by One Equity Partners, advised by Savoric & Partners, in Croatia's Infobip software company. As a result of the deal, Infobip became the country’s first unicorn.
And, according to Gasparac, his team was also involved in the deal that was announced in early September by which Exclusive Networks acquired the entire CEE operations – covering ten countries – of Veracomp.
On the sale side, “one of the deals we were working on was unfortunately disrupted when the lockdown kicked in,” Gasparac says, but a different one is in the final stages, and he hopes to see it announced soon. Both of these deals, he reports, involve strategic investors who are looking at the same TMT sector targets.
Gasparac suspects that interest in this particular field has been driven by targets “developing software that is internationally recognized and globally-scalable.” And he expects this to continue to fuel the practice’s pipeline in the near future as well. “There are still a good number of local players who are recognized internationally," he says, "so we expect the focus on these as potential targets to continue, especially now after it has been quiet for some time. I only hope we’ll all learn to adapt to this climate and carry on with our regular activities.”