The first half of 2018 has witnessed deals worth $74.8 billion, which is a 90% rise from the levels seen during the first half of 2017, a dealtracker report by Grant Thornton said. Total mergers and acquisition (M&A) value rose 112% to $65.45 billion in the first half of 2018 compared to the same period in 2017. From the volumes perspective, M&A rose 19% to 235 deals in H1 2018 compared to the same period last year. \u201cDriven by a stable economy and positive deal market fundamentals, the first half of 2018 witnessed significant consolidation in the domestic space with around 140 transactions amounting to $41billion. The deal values were 1.5x higher (y-o-y) compared to H1 2017,\u201d the report indicated. According to the dealtracker report, the Bharti Infratel-Indus towers mega merger, which is valued at $14.6 billion, along with seven other big ticket deals in the billion-dollar category contributed to the surge in the transaction values. Inbound deal activity witnessed a 6.4 fold increase in the deal values compared to H1 2017, primarily driven by the Walmart-Flipkart deal valued at $16 billion. However, contrary to H1 2017, the year saw investments primarily coming from the US, France and Singapore together contributing to 94% of total inbound deal values. Outbound deal activity saw a significant increase with recorded values of $3.1 billion from 44 deals. This was driven by companies with strong balance sheets expanding overseas to increase their market reach and establish themselves in the global market. As far as private equity (PE) investments are concerned, deal volumes fell 2% in H12018 to 403 deals while values increased by 12% to $9.397 billion compared to the first half of 2017. \u201cThese included 26 investments garnering $100 million and above and 17 investments attracting funds in the range of $50 million- $99 million each this year, together contributing 78% of PE investment values. The average deal size increased from $20 million in H1 2017 to $23 million in H1 2018,\u201d the report indicated. Sectors like e-commerce, telecom, energy, manufacturing, infrastructure, banking and real estate attracted big-ticket transactions and investments during H1 2018.