Q4 2020 saw North American M&A volume of 3,874 transactions and total deal value of $549.9 billion.
Within the specialty distribution sector, there were 75 transactions in Q4 2020, compared to 76 transactions in Q4 2019. The sector had 258 total transactions in 2020 compared to last year’s total of 345—a substantial decrease of 25% largely due to effects of COVID-19.
Public Company Performance
Public company EV/EBITDA multiples continue to increase with a median specialty distribution multiple of 10.2x in Q4 2020 compared to a median multiple of 9.6x in Q3 2020. The median EV/EBITDA multiple in Q4 2019 was 9.6x.
After Q4 2020, only one specialty distribution sub-sector (Building and Construction) has outperformed the S&P 500 over the past five years.