NEW YORK: Kekst & Company shot to the top of mergermarket?s M&A league tables in the second quarter, after briefly relinquishing their hold on first place last quarter.
Kekst ranked first in both deal value and volume in the first half of 2005, advising on 52 deals totaling $143.6 billion. Brunswick Group placed second, with 31 deals worth $97.5 billion.
Citigate Sard Verbinnen was third in value with 42 deals worth $79 billion. Abernathy MacGregor and Joele Frank rounded out the top five firms.
Kekst also led in volume, followed closely by Financial Dynamics, which advised on 50 deals in the first half. Citigate, Abernathy, and Brunswick were third, fourth, and fifth in volume.
Kekst senior partner Jeffrey Taufield said the firm is "gratified" with its performance, and emphasized that Kekst is continuing to expand the reach of its business.
He attributed the strength of the M&A market to healthy cash reserves of both public and private companies, CEO confidence in the economy, consolidation across a range of industries, and the increasing importance of nations like China in the US economy.
"As long as it's cheaper to buy than to build, M&A's going to remain strong," Taufield said.
Also notable is the extent to which private investment firms as clients can buoy the ranking of smaller agencies like Stanton Crenshaw and Owen Blicksilver PR (7th and 8th in value, respectively).