AIM companies put deals on hold

Almost a fifth of the AIM-traded companies polled for a recent survey by accountancy firm Smith & Williamson had shelved plans for acquisitions last year.


Almost a fifth of the AIM-traded companies polled for a recent survey by accountancy firm Smith & Williamson had shelved plans for acquisitions last year.

Almost a fifth of the AIM-traded companies polled for a recent survey by accountancy firm Smith & Williamson had shelved plans for acquisitions last year.

Although a fifth had postponed expansion plans, the findings revealed that almost two-thirds (63%) planned to make an acquisition in the near future – a fifth (20%) over the next six months and a quarter (22%) before the year is out.

The survey, which questioned FDs, CEOs and senior decision-makers at 123 UK-based AIM companies, also indicated that the number of AIM ventures that have put fundraising on hold has almost doubled from a fifth (20%) to over a third (36%).

John Cowie, head of AIM at Smith & Williamson, said: “The recession, aggravated by the contraction in the debt market has pushed share prices far lower than companies could have anticipated. This is the key reason why companies are unwilling to raise funds and make acquisitions – they don’t want to issue equity at a price well below what they believe is reasonable.”

While falling share prices have scuppered fundraisings and paper deals, an overwhelming majority of 83 per cent of those questioned were positive or neutral about their experience of the London Stock Exchange’s junior platform for growth companies, leaving only 17% for whom the experience had been negative.

Nick Britton

Lexus Ernser

Nick was the Managing Editor for growthbusiness.co.uk when it was owned by Vitesse Media, before moving on to become Head of Investment Group and Editor at What Investment and thence to Head of Intermediary...

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