David Braun

About

David Braun is the founder and CEO of Capstone Strategic and author of Successful Acquisitions: A Proven Plan for Growth. His specialty is helping companies grow through acquisition.

Through consistent focus on this one specialty, David has built up a formidable expertise that has led to an acquisition success rate way beyond the industry average.

David Braun is a sought-after educator who has been teaching senior executives and financial professionals for over 21 years. His live seminars and online webinars are in high demand, and his blog is widely read by M&A professionals, business owners and all who wish to understand the dynamics of growth through company acquisition.

Popular

Market Criteria, Market Research

Markets First

I always emphasize to my clients the critical value of painstaking market research and selection before considering individual prospects. Simply by conducting thorough research, you immediately separate yourself from the majority of company buyers and place yourself at an important competitive advantage. Choosing Market Criteria Choosing the correct market criteria may be tricky. Here are […]

Pathways to Growth

Five Pathways to Growth

As you focus your attention on the growth of your company, there are five key pathways to consider: Grow Organically Exit the Market Be the Low-Cost Provider Do Nothing Pursue External Growth Before you even start planning an acquisition, remember there are other growth options available. It is an important realization that you do have […]

Cultural Integration Publicis Omnicom

Publicis-Omnicom Merger May Face Cultural Integration Challenges

The merger between two advertising giants Publicis Groupe and Omnicom Group has caused quite a stir. The two companies combined to form Publicis Omnicom Group would have stock-market value of $35.1 billion, making this the largest advertising merger ever. Although Chief Executive Maurice Levy and CEO John Wren both stress this is a “merger of […]

Recent Posts

3 Ways to Build Trust with Owners in Mergers & Acquisitions

3 Ways to Build Trust with Owners in Mergers & Acquisitions

“It’s the funny thing about all these deals, though. Yes, you can get a banker involved.  But a lot of it comes back to relationships.”

How to Find Qualified Acquisition Prospects

How to Find Qualified Acquisition Prospects

Generating a list of companies to acquire is easy. Simply call up an investment banker or visit a broker website like BizBuySell and you’ll find dozens of for-sale companies. The problem with this approach is although these owners are willing to sell, many of these companies may not be what you are looking for in […]

3 Phases to Successful Acquisitions

3 Phases to Successful Mergers and Acquisitions

In my last post I explained why following a process is critical to M&A success. If you haven’t had a chance to read it yet, please check it out. This post will further detail our systematic acquisition process, the Roadmap to AcquisitionsSM developed from first-hand experience working with strategic buyers. There are three main phases: […]

The Secret to Successful Mergers & Acquisitions

The Secret to Successful Mergers & Acquisitions

I’m often asked, “What is the key to a successful acquisition?” I have one simple answer: Have a process. You can compare the mergers and acquisitions (M&A) process to the hiring process. Before we even begin interviewing candidates, we develop a job description, whom the employee will report to, when they will start, performance metrics, […]

Why Do Owners Really Agree to Sell

Why Do Owners Really Agree to Sell?

How many of you would say your most recent hire agreed to join your organization purely for financial reasons? Most employees take other factors into consideration including benefits, location, job description, your company’s mission, and “fit” with your company’s culture. The financial side is certainly important, but leveraging these other factors is critical, especially when […]

Looking to Acquire Start with Markets First

Looking to Acquire a Company? Start with Markets First

One of the first questions people ask me about M&A is, “Do you have a list of companies interesting in selling?” But this is the wrong question to be asking. By the nature of our role as third-party M&A advisors we do hear of for-sale companies, but from experience we have found using list is […]

Common Misconceptions About M&A Part 3

Common Misconceptions About M&A Explained – Part 3

This post is part of a series on common misconceptions about acquisitions I’ve encountered over the years as an advisor. Read parts one and two. Misconception #3: Only the CEO and CFO Should Be Involved Because of the confidential nature of acquisitions, naturally most company owners do not disclose their acquisition plans to the entire […]

Common Misconceptions About M&A Part 2

Common Misconceptions About M&A Explained – Part 2

This post is part of a series on common misconceptions about acquisitions I’ve encountered over the years as an advisor. To read the first post, please click here. Misconception #2: You Can Execute an Acquisition “On the Side” Many underestimate the level of effort required to complete a transaction. An acquisition is a significant undertaking […]

Common Misconceptions About M&A Explained

Common Misconceptions About M&A Explained

Throughout my over 25 years’ experience helping companies grow through strategic mergers and acquisitions, I have seen many different types of transactions and while each deal is unique, there are a few common themes that run through them all. In this series I will be answering some typical questions and clarifying a few common misconceptions […]

Be Specific About Price In the Letter of Intent

Be Specific About Price In the Letter of Intent

Don’t rush to get a signed letter of intent (LOI) by kicking the can down the road on price. A signed LOI is a significant milestone in the M&A process, indicating mutual interest in an acquisition. The document covers the basic parameters of the deal that both buyer and seller agree to including what will […]

A New Thinking on Due Diligence Webinar

Three Common Due Diligence Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

In October 2017, four months after closing its $4.48 billion acquisition of Yahoo, Verizon announced that all three billion Yahoo accounts had been hacked in 2013. On October 23, 2018, Yahoo agreed to pay $50 million in damages to affected users. As the acquirer, Verizon will shoulder half the costs. Obviously, most of us would […]

Unlocking Your Company’s Potential for Growth

Unlocking Your Company’s Potential for Growth

“At our last strategic planning session, we realized we needed to do something else in addition to organic growth to meet our company’s five-year goals,” Dan* recently shared with me on the phone. Like many middle market companies, organic growth was stagnant, and the company’s progress had plateaued. Dan saw the gap between where the […]

Happy New Year from Capstone

Happy New Year from Capstone – 2018 Charity Survey Results

Happy New Year! Last year we asked you to help us give back by voting for your favorite charity. We are very excited to announce the results from the survey and have made a contribution to each of the charities in proportion to your selection. Each of the charities noted above have made a significant […]

New Year, New Opportunities: 2 Ways to Reflect on Company Growth

New Year, New Opportunities: 2 Ways to Reflect on Company Growth

Hello and Happy New Year! Welcome to the first post in 2019. I always love the new year because it’s a great time to take a step back, reflect and refocus. Far too often business leaders get caught up in the day-to-day of running a company, putting out fires, or jumping to the next big […]

M&A in Review: Top Posts from 2018

M&A in Review: Top posts from 2018

While 2018 has been the highest year on record for mergers and acquisitions, dealmaking is slowing down. Geopolotical risk, trade issues, and stock market volatility all play a role in CEO confidence, one of the primary drivers of activity. Coming off three years of strong activity and favorable economic conditions the tide may be shifting. […]

Joint Ventures and Strategic Alliances Are on the Rise

Joint Ventures and Strategic Alliances Are on the Rise

The number of strategic alliances and joint ventures (JV) is growing. In 2017, joint ventures and strategic alliances grew 30% compared to the previous year and 49% of CEOs are planning a new strategic alliance or joint venture in 2019, according to a PWC CEO Survey. According to Strategy& executives are pursuing JVs and strategic […]

United Technologies Splits into 3 to Grow Long-term

United Technologies Splits into 3 to Grow Long-term 

M&A is not always about getting bigger. Often, it’s about recalibrating a business to focus on core competencies and long-term growth. On November 27, United Technologies announced it would split into three companies by 2020. United Technologies will focus on aerospace, Otis on elevators, and Carrier on air-conditioning and HVAC. United Technologies Chairman and CEO Gregory […]

Past Success is No Guarantee of Future Success

Past Success Is No Guarantee of Future Success

Past success is no guarantee of future success. Just ask Shakey’s Pizza, Ground Round Grill & Bar or Frisch’s Big Boy. If you’re scratching your head wondering what these companies are, you have proven my point. A recent Wall Street Journal article highlighted the ways these three companies, which were once recognizable anywhere, have shrunk […]

5 Questions to Jump-Start Your Acquisition Plan

5 Questions to Jump-Start Your Acquisition Plan

In my over 20 years of helping companies grow through acquisitions, I can say the secret to a successful deal is having a solid, strategic approach to M&A. This is true for middle market manufacturers, technology startups, family-owned food and beverage companies, and divisions of publicly traded firms. Having a plan is the first step […]

2 Topics to Avoid at the Thanksgiving and the Deal Table

2 Topics to Avoid at the Thanksgiving and the Deal Table

It’s almost time for Thanksgiving here in the US and for many of us that means traveling to be with our families and friends. If you’re like most folks, there may be a few topics you steer clear of as you gather around the dinner table this Thursday. In the same way, when meeting with […]