As in past years, the consumer industry ranked highest for M&A volume in 2019, even though overall sector value and volume slightly decreased when compared with the preceding year. Consumer companies relied on organic growth within their core competencies. Activity varied across regions, with trade uncertainty driving a significant decrease in deal value in the United States, counterbalanced by a large increase in deal value in Europe. Deal flow in the Asia Pacific and Middle East region remained constant.   

Activity in the sector favored acquisitions designed to enhance geographic diversity of supply chains and to amplify digital capabilities with an emphasis on direct-to-consumer technologies, such as e-commerce channels.

In 2019, our Consumer sector group produced toolkits and other thought leadership focused on key issues, such as environmental sustainability and business integrity, hot topics in retail and fashion, supply chain and regulatory matters, and business restructuring.

We launched our series, Doing Business In…, which provides an overview of legal issues in the consumer sector, such as consumer protection, supply chains, product regulation, data privacy, intellectual property, and changing tariffs and customs that impact consumer businesses looking to enter new markets.

480+

Consumer lawyers

Band 1

Food and Beverages:
Regulatory and Litigation
Chambers USA, 2019

In 2019, Hogan Lovells advised on the following
Consumer transactions, among others:

Asahi

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Asahi

We advised Asahi on its £250m acquisition of the entire premium beer business of Fuller, Smith & Turner. As part of the transaction, Asahi acquired the iconic Griffin Brewery, brands such as London Pride and Frontier Premium London Lager, and the Cornish Orchards and Dark Star brewing businesses, along with a license to use certain other trademarks for the provision of beverages in connection with the businesses. A team in our London and Tokyo offices led this deal, with support from our antitrust, commercial, cybersecurity, employee benefits, employment, intellectual property, pensions, real estate, and tax practices.

drom fragrances

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drom fragrances

We advised drom fragrances, a global perfume house, on its sale to Givaudan, a flavors and fragrances producer. The combination allows drom, which had previously been family-owned for more than 100 years, to further expand its customer reach and geographical footprint. Lawyers in our Munich, Baltimore, Beijing, Hong Kong, London, Madrid, Milan, Paris, São Paulo, and Washington, D.C. offices led this transaction, with support from our antitrust, commercial, employment, intellectual property, real estate, and tax practices.

Oracle

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Oracle

We advised Oracle on its acquisition of the naming rights to the San Francisco Giants stadium, now known as Oracle Park, a premier venue in the world of sports and entertainment. The 20-year partnership between Oracle and the Giants will include investment in ballpark technology upgrades, community outreach programs, and unique sports hospitality experiences for Oracle customers and members of the community. A team of lawyers in our Denver office led this transaction, with support from our intellectual property practice.

Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons

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Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons

We advised Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons, UAEs leading retailer of luxury watches and jewellery, on its joint venture with WatchBox, the world’s leading platform for the buying, selling, and trading of pre-owned luxury watches. Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons first entry into the fast-growing pre-owned luxury watch sector, the joint venture establishes a retail outlet in Dubai, which allows regional clients to sell into and access WatchBox’s extensive pre-owned inventory. Lawyers in our Baltimore and Dubai offices led this transaction.

“Hogan Lovells represents major brands, food retailers, distributors, and manufacturers.”

Chambers UK, 2019

Consumer market statistics as published in Hogan Lovells Deal Dynamics

4%

4%

Decrease in global deal volume
(2019 vs. 2018)

1%

1%

Decrease in global deal value
(2019 vs. 2018)

1st

1st

Sector by global deal volume
(2019)

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M&A Year in Review | 2019

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