Global private equity and venture capital investments in research and consulting service providers totaled $6.41 billion in the fourth quarter to Nov. 9, driven by Bain Capital Pvt. Equity LP's $5.30 billion announced acquisition of Guidehouse Inc. from Veritas Capital Fund Management LLC, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence.
The outsized transaction marks the third straight quarter of growth in the sector and already exceeds the full fourth-quarter 2022 total of $3.62 billion invested. Data represents announced whole company and minority stake acquisitions and funding rounds.
Only 26 deals have been reported so far in the fourth quarter, which could turn out to be the lowest number in the last five years.
The value and volume of private equity-backed deals in the sector are on track to show an annual decrease in 2023. Investment value stood at $15.01 billion across 214 transactions year to date through Nov. 9, compared to full-year 2022 totals of $27.48 billion across 314 transactions.
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Deal value surged between Oct. 1 and Nov. 9 thanks to the Bain Capital deal for Guidehouse. The $5.30 billion transaction is among the year's largest private equity-backed transactions across all sectors. Guidehouse provides consulting services to the public sector and commercial markets.
Within the research and consulting vertical, the second-largest transactions involved two competing offers for Spain's Applus Services SA, which provides testing, inspection and certification services.