Amid the disappointing data about dealmaking in 2012, cross-border M&A provides a ray of hope. The amount of money invested in M&A transactions in emerging markets grew five percent to $162.4 billion, according to a recent report by international law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (although deal volume was down 12 percent).

We’ll be exploring emerging marketing and other opportunities in cross-border M&A on Feb. 27, when Mergers & Acquisitions and Bank of America Merrill Lynch will host a symposium on “International Transformation: Unlocking Value and Executing Abroad.” The event will be held at the Standard Club in Chicago.

Mergers & Acquisitions editor-in-chief Mary Kathleen Flynn will be there, moderating a panel on “Global Market Entry Strategies,” featuring, among others, the Jordan Co.’s Andrew Rice. The Jordan Co. was one of the first U.S. private equity firms to expand abroad. The firm has experience in establishing and acquiring operations in Europe, Asia, and Latin America, with particular expertise in China, where the firm established manufacturing resources as early as 1995.

Other speakers include BofA Merrill Lynch’s Alister Bazaz. Broadly speaking, cross-border M&A gives dealmakers the opportunity “to expand their revenue and profit base globally at a time when the U.S. is relatively flat and asset values overseas (particularly Europe) are reasonable,” says Bazaz. But there are challenges, including “identifying properties that are for sale or are a strategic fit, given that Europe and Asia are made up of many ‘markets’. Availability of debt financing can be a challenge if properties are in ‘difficult to finance’ countries,” he explains.

How can dealmakers “unlock value and execute abroad,” as the title of the symposium says?

“By acquiring foreign businesses, one can expand one’s customer base, simplify organizational design, simplify go-to-market strategies and streamline overhead,” answers Bazaz. “Corporate organizational design needs to be reevaluated based upon multiple variables, not just tax and legal.”

To register for the symposium, click here

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