Cross-Border M&A

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  • Weaker sterling offers more opportunity to foreign investors.
  • Conversely, political uncertainty and lack of a new U.K./EU settlement will be a disincentive for buyers. U.K. M&A activity slowed in 2016 while the outcome of referendum was awaited. Other European M&A activity is likely to remain challenging while the EU responds to Brexit, as well as other crises.
  • Will the U.K. merger control regime remain connected to EU standards? There may be an increased need for U.K. merger control filings following the formal exit.
  • Activity in sectors dependent on the final outcome of new U.K./EU arrangements (e.g., financial services) is likely to be depressed until a new settlement is reached.
  • It is possible that cross-border merger rules as well as rules with respect to European companies (Societas Europaea) may no longer apply in the U.K. following formal exit.
  • Although English contract law is largely unaffected—and it is likely that this will continue to govern many cross-border M&A transactions—there is an increased change-of-law risk. The U.K. will need to review much of its existing legislation and, depending upon the final form of the new settlement with the EU, may introduce significant changes.

Contact Information

If you have any questions regarding this content, please contact the Akin Gump lawyer with whom you usually work or

Vance Chapman
+44 20.7661.5333

David N. Sewell
+44 20.7012.9648

Sebastian Rice
+44 20.7012.9618


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