Mergermarket Corporate Development Forum Europe 2023

The must-attend event for corporate development professionals in Europe!

The Langham, London

08.30 - 09.00

Registration and Breakfast

09.25 - 09.45

Keynote: History restarted: need-to-know as geopolitics bites back

The period from the fall of the Berlin Wall through to that of Lehman Brothers was one of Western geopolitical stability and solid economic growth fuelled by globalisation (albeit not all gained from capital’s profits).

Monetary policy activism kept a punch bowl full through to 2020 and covid saw both monetary and fiscal policy actions. However, the fraying in political stability was evidenced by the election of Trump, Brexit, the increasing influence of the far right in France and resurgent Russian belligerence.

2022 saw the wheels come off: inflation, de- or re-globalisation, Russian imperialism, US use of trade policy to combat threats, Chinese manoeuvres and inflation causing havoc.

  • Global geopolitics can seem a perennial storm of volatility. What trends can we hold on to that will last five or 10 years?
  • How is the European Union evolving in line with these trends? In terms of trade and competition policy, R&D, ESG, emissions, defence?
  • The UK has pulled away from the EU project, but geopolitical gravity is aligning Britain with the EU in many ways. What areas of alignment - and what of divergence - could we see develop in the coming five years?
  • As an expert practitioner in the foreign affairs space, what kind of consultancy do you see best-in-class corporations avail themselves of? Are executives perceived as having influence over any of the above?
09.45 - 10.30

Panel: M&A deal leaders – New solutions to common challenges, and how to shape business strategies amid signs of instability

This panel will evaluate what are the biggest challenges corporates are facing and where we are in the cycle to inform future impact on deal flow and value drivers for M&A in the current uncertain global economy but specifically the skittish European market.

  • Deal processes complications – what are the risks to be assessed in the current environment?
  • What are the current trends in deal structures and how do deal terms compare between different European regions and globally?
  • How much pressure do corporates have to review their portfolios?
  • What types of deals generate better shareholder returns at a time of rising funding costs and falling valuation.

10.30 - 10.50

Fireside chat: The future of corporate development teams

This exclusive interview will discover what the future holds for corporate development and how to navigate through an M&A transaction. 

  • What will the corporate development landscape look like in 5 years? 
  • Corporate firms are also subject to disruption through technological innovation. Which new technologies have disrupted the industry? 
  • How is the role of ESG changing when it comes to deal success or failure and when has ESG played a factor in deals failing?
  • Is the time right in the industry cycle to acquire or carve-out?
  • Do regulatory issues come into play and does the geopolitical environment cause concern?
Tim Cutting
Tim Cutting Director of Corporate Development, The Co-operative Group
Rupert Cocke
Rupert Cocke Senior Editor, Head of Iberian Coverage, Mergermarket
10.50 - 11.20

Networking coffee break

11.20 - 12.05

Panel: Boards involvement in M&A

This session will examine how board members can impact an M&A deal before, during and after the transaction is complete. Speakers will also discuss what deals should boards get involved in?

  • What is the true scope of the board’s role in corporate M&A and how do you modernise a board involvement in M&A?
  • How do boards challenge value-creation potential? 
  • How can you best support a board across the entire deal life cycle?
Fredrik vom Hofe
Fredrik vom Hofe Founder & CEO, Shoreside Equity Partners AB
Gustav Sandstrom
Gustav Sandstrom Senior News Editor EMEA, Public Markets, MERGERMARKET
12.05 - 12.25

Fireside Chat: Competition cases within M&A

The competition rules can hinder M&A deals in surprising ways. Our panel will discuss the issues and challenges surrounding antitrust and competition laws and how to effectively manage them. 

  • How is competition risk allocated and what are the key risks that could delay or complicate a competition review process?
  • What are the most successful merger control procedures?
  • How do you identify competition issues early on and what can be done to resolve them instantly and what are the boundaries of talking to competitors under competition law? 
  • What are the issues surrounding multi-jurisdictional merger control?
Naomi Burgoyne
Naomi Burgoyne Director, Mergers, Competition and Markets Authority
Jacob Parry
Jacob Parry Chief Regulatory Correspondent of EMEA, PaRR
12.25 - 13.10

Panel: Post-merger integration - the importance of retaining employees and maintaining company culture

In this session the speakers will discuss driving strategic growth when building on acquisitions. They will discuss the global M&A market and initial tips on executing transaction with ease whilst retaining talent at all levels. 

  • How can you best assess the cultural fit during your diligence processes and how should integration experts think about talent engagement and retention in the midst of a merger?
  • Highlight the importance of people management after a corporate transaction
  • Quite often culture has been viewed as the intangible element left to address in the post-integration phase - What culture moments really matter in a deal and how can you make sure you embed these into your value creation plan at the pre-deal phase?  
  • How can large firms attract talent from Gen Y and Z?
13.10 - 14.10

Networking lunch break

14.10 - 14.55

Panel: Cross-border M&A – strategies and challenges 2023

This panel will highlight how investors should be responding to the geopolitical tensions, more complex regulations and higher risks associated with cross-border deal making globally. The experts will look at both inbound and outbound challenges and opportunities. 

  • Which regions and sectors are dealmakers seeing the most cross-border activity?
  • Are cross-border deals still being made fully virtually or more of a blended method? 
  • With political tensions rising across Europe, is now the time to be investing? 
  • Can we expect more inbound and outbound Asian deals? 
Joakim Notö
Joakim Notö Managing Partner, Group Chairman, Mimir Group
Daniel Blaettler
Daniel Blaettler General Counsel Corporate, Finance & Transactions, Lonza
Lucinda Guthrie
Lucinda Guthrie Executive Editor, MERGERMARKET
14.55 - 15.20

Fireside Chat: Tech innovations and cybersecurity advancements

In this session, experts will discuss the importance of technology in a company and how technology is being increasingly used to improve deal insight and workflow efficiency. 

  • What are the technology issues that all companies must be mindful of after completing an M&A transaction?
  • How will new technologies such as bloc chain and AI will impact the M&A from a process and activity perspective ?
  • Cybersecuirty risks in M&A 
  • How important is cybersecurity during an acquisition and how do you conduct cyber-risk analysis during your due diligence?
  • How are companies using new technologies to shape M&A due diligence and how can technology drive innovation within M&A?
15.20 - 15.50

Networking coffee break

15.50 - 16.15

Fireside Chat: Overview of European IPO and carve-out activity

IPO activity has slowed globally as volatility in markets has increased in-line with rising interest rates and macro-economic pressures. What it the future of the product, will we see a prolonged period of malaise in European IPOs or are there still some exciting potential deals, like the IPO of Porsche last year that cab buck even a bad market

  • The importance of staying local when it comes to listing on capital market - is this still the case or are European exchanges losing their lustre?
  • Can we take anything away from ARMs decision to pursue a US listing over one on the LSE? Has London's star fallen or are we just hitting a bump in the road?
  • Which IPOs have been successful, and which have been disappointing?
  • Why was Porsche so successful in such a bad IPO year.
  • Are carveouts the right solution to the challenging market conditions and what are the current challenges or will companies refrain from separations?
  • Have we seen the IPO investor base change and are we now seeing sovereign wealth funds start to stretch
      their muscles a little more in Europe?
Andreas Bernstorff
Andreas Bernstorff Head of Equity Capital Markets, BNP Paribas
16.15 - 17.00

Panel: Climate disruptors and the everlasting importance of ESG

This session will discuss how climate disruption means that ESG plays a key role in defining a company’s reputation and culture with M&A, as businesses strive to meet ESG expectations. 

  • What challenges are you facing in meeting carbon neutrality targets in line with the goals set in the Paris Agreement?
  • How are sustainability strategies affecting M&A decisions and what is best practice for sustainability considerations versus growth strategies? 
  • Do you see the integration of ESG targets within organisations impacting the company’s culture?
  • What are the business risks associated with neglecting an ESG strategy? 
Tanja Gihr
Tanja Gihr Managing Director, Head of ESG Advisory EMEA , Sustainable and Impact Banking, Barclays
Conor Kehoe
Conor Kehoe Member, G7 Impact Taskforce
Rachel Lewis
Rachel Lewis Private Equity Senior Reporter, Mergermarket
17.00 - 21.00

"Dealmakers and Trailblazers" Women's Networking Reception

Join us for a networking reception that celebrates women in M&A and corporate development! Hosted by Mergermarket and CMS, this event is open to all delegates of the conference.

At "Dealmakers and Trailblazers" you'll have the opportunity to connect with other women in the industry face-to-face, exchange experiences and best practices, and learn about different sides of the business. It's a chance to make meaningful connections with other professionals in the same field.

Our very special guest speaker at the reception will be...Annabel Thomas, CEO and Founder of Mc'nean Distilery - UK’s first whisky distillery to be verified as net zero and record breaking auction product. 

We believe that gender equity and inclusivity are important values, and we want to create a networking event that reflects that. That's why we're inviting everyone to join us, regardless of gender identity. Allies who support gender equality and inclusivity are welcome too!

So come join us for an exciting evening of networking, learning, and inspiration!

Please RSVP here.