Goldman's Waldron Sees `Extraordinary Time' for Dealmaking

(Bloomberg) -- Strategic dealmaking driven by disruption across industries means 2018 will be an “extraordinary time” for M&A activity, one of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s top bankers said.

“There’s disruption in all these industries, and some more pronounced than others,” John Waldron, co-head of investment banking, said Thursday in a Bloomberg TV interview at Goldman Sachs’s Leveraged Finance Conference in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. Companies are finding that “strategic behavior is taking precedence over almost anything else,” including concerns about debt ratings, he said.

Tech companies’ rush to expand into media, for example, will drive deals in that industry, Waldron said. Companies are also under pressure from activist shareholders demanding they “skinny down,” he added.

While volatility has increased this year, it’s still an “incredibly good time to access” the market for capital and investment-grade financing, he said.

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.