Singapore Markets close in 6 hrs 15 mins

PwC Report Shows Major Growth in Crypto M&A in Asia and Europe

Wolfie Zhao

A majority of fundraising and M&A deals in the cryptocurrency industry are now happening in Asia and Europe, surpassing the previously dominant role of the Americas, according to a new report from PwC.

Released on Thursday at CoinDesk’s Invest: Asia event, the professional service firm’s analysis of the crypto ecosystem found that 41 percent of global fundraising deals in Q2 2019 took place in Europe. Europe saw 34 percent of global fundraising deals in the same period last year.

Similarly, cryptocurrency fundraises in the Asian market have jumped significantly, accounting for 26 percent of the deals in Q2 2019.

Related: Bobby Lee Returns With Ballet, a Crypto Hardware Wallet for the Masses

Combined, the two regions accounted for 67 percent of the action in Q2 2019.

Meanwhile, the report identifies a significant drop in crypto fundraising deals in the Americas.

While the region accounted for 51 percent of global deals in Q2 2018, the Americas captured just 28 percent in Q2 2019.

Globally, however, the total number of fundraising deals, as well as the amount of capital involved, have both declined by more than 50 percent from as high as $408 million in Q1 2018.

Related: WATCH: CoinDesk LIVE from Invest: Asia

That said, given bitcoin’s recent price rebound, the report indicates there has been an uptick in the value of global deals, which has grown to $250 million in Q2 2019 from $166 million in Q1.

Speaking to this trend, Lucy Gazmararian, senior manager of PwC’s fintech and crypto team, said at Invest: Asia:

“The price of bitcoin is the bellwether for the industry and for the sentiment of investors. As the price of bitcoin has recovered, we see the sentiment has become more positive and have seen more activities in fundraising and M&A activities.”

The PwC report added that the firm has observed a similar trend in the mergers-and-acquisitions realm, for which the dominance of the U.S. market has decreased from over 80 percent in the first half of 2018 to 48 percent in Q2 2019.

Meanwhile, the combination of M&A deals that happened in Asia and Europe jumped from just 17 percent in early 2018 to over 50 percent now.

Elsewhere in the report, the firm observed a significant decline of M&A deals in the cryptocurrency mining sector since the start of 2018 while investment interest has shifted more towards blockchain infrastructure development. Gazmararian added:

“Since the first half of 2018, we have seen the investment in the mining sector has been consolidating while healthy activity remain in blockchain, exchanges and trading infrastructure.”

In a statement, PwC FinTech & Crypto Leader for Asia Henri Arslanian echoed that sentiment.

“Except perhaps for crypto mining, we are seeing capital flow to every sector of the crypto industry,” Arslanian said, “in particular, crypto exchanges as well as broader crypto trading and blockchain infrastructure companies.”

Lucy Gazmararian image via CoinDesk/Jamie Yeo

Related Stories