Brrring back the deals: Will the IPO and M&A markets warm up again?

A strange economy has made for strange deal-making times.

Remember the good old days, when you’d race to invest in a hot startup that just went public at an enormous valuation, then watch your money vanish within months?


OK, so that was two years ago and it was not particularly good.

Well, times have changed — as have interest rates — and US companies raised only $9.1B through IPOs this year compared to the usual ~$27B, as investors scrutinize profitability.

M&A? More like MIA

It’s not just IPOs. Globally, between higher rates, geopolitical issues, and recessionary concerns, deal volume for mergers and acquisitions dropped 40% YoY to $1.03T so far, down from 2021’s $3.83T record, according to Bloomberg.

What’s more? M&A volume in unicornland is on track for its slowest year since 2013, per Crunchbase, with just 429 venture-backed US startups making M&A exits in the first half of the year, down from 1.7k in 2021 and 1.1k last year.

There are bright spots

For instance, Savvy Gaming Group is acquiring gaming company Scopely for $4.9B, T-Mobile is buying Mint Mobile for $1.4B, and Databricks bagged MosaicML for $1.3B, to name a few.

The stock market, spurred by easing inflation, is also on a hot streak, warming up the bread maker for expected IPOs from companies like Arm, Klaviyo, Turo, Birkenstock, and Instacart.

But let’s not get greedy, people

What we don’t want to see is another meme-stock situation the second the gates open up.

Perhaps we have not yet learned our lessons there: The Solactive Roundhill Meme Stock Index is up 67% this year. and retail traders’ bullish sentiment is its highest since 2021.

So whaddya say we keep up the good work on bringing IPOs and M&As back to life, but not mess things up again in the process?

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