Joele Frank Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher and Sard Verbinnen topped the 2020 Mergermarket global rankings of PR firms handling M&A transactions.

Joele Frank was the #1 PR advisor when measured by deal value, working transactions with a total value of close to $376 million. Sard Verbinnen, which served as advisor on 221 deals, took the top spot for number of deals handled.

Overall, the global M&A market cooled considerably last year. Four out of the top five firms in both the deal value and deal count rankings saw a decline from 2019. The exceptions were Finsbury Glover Hering, which showed a 33.8 percent rise in deal value to take the #4 spot, and Brunswick Group, which saw its deal count go from 165 in 2019 to 180 last year, placing second in that category.

The top five in the global deal value list also included Sard Verbinnen (#2), Brunswick Group (#3) and Kekst CNC (#5). When measured by global deal count, Finsbury Glover Hering (#3), Joele Frank (#4) and Kekst CNC (#5) scored top rankings.

Both U.S. lists were headed by Sard Verbinnen, with Joele Frank coming in second on both. The top five in terms of U.S. deal value were rounded out by Finsbury Glover Hering, Brunswick Group and Kekst CNC, with Kekst, Abernathy MacGregor and FGH cracking the top five in the U.S. deal count rankings.

In Europe, Brunswick Group led the deal value and deal count lists. Brunswick was also #1 on the deal value list in Asia-Pacific (excluding Japan), with Sard Verbinnen taking the top spot in deal count.

Mergermarket’s rankings measure deals with a value of over $5 million. If the deal’s value is not disclosed, the target’s turnover must be more than $10 million. For deals where the stake is less than 30 percent, the value must exceed $100 million.