Technology firms are ripe for the picking in 2011

Post recession, the markets are bouncing back. The value of technology deals last year topped €76bn worldwide, a huge leap from the slightly sad €37bn figure of 2009. The cash-rich corporates are back and they're toting rapacious appetites for innovative, profit-generating firms. The capital markets are on the mend and private equity houses are looking to swell their portfolios.

PwC has identified the key hotspots in the technology sector: these are the businesses that will see most action in 2011. Financial technology companies are the big winners. Following a raft of financial regulation and red tape, businesses that help the financial services industry manage risk and achieve transparency across their organisations will thrive.

The Cloud is also a sexy niche. There will be much consolidation in the market as behemoths gobble up smaller firms in an effort to grab pockets of market share. Clever tech firms in this space will be particularly attractive to the big players as they attempt to broaden their product offerings and offer greater security and  useability.

Likewise, the mobile data industry has come on in leaps and bounds. PwC pinpoints advertising, payments, messaging, gaming and content as the true growth markets as smartphones continue to dominate mobile purchases.

The big money is flowing into Europe from the US. In 2010, 39% of global deals came from across the Atlantic. US corporate are pulling out the big guns to ensure a truly international base by acquiring firms across Europe and beyond.

And all of this growth has been fostered by an increased appetite for debt financing among the banks. This is stimulating the private equity industry and injecting life into the M&A sector.

2011 will be a boom year for deal-making among technology firms. Watch this space.

Picture source: Jakeliefer

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