M&A Insights from David Braun and Other Experts

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Welcome To This Blog

For nearly two years, Mergers & Acquisitions Daily has brought you a fresh perspective to the ever-changing world of M&A. As a veteran practitioner, I have fashioned a new approach to the challenges of external growth — a systematic process that has resulted in numerous successful deals across multiple industries. In this blog I share […]

LOIs: A Marketing Opportunity

Two separate clients asked me for a Letter of Intent (LOI) sample within 48 hours.  Other typical questions include:  “What should an LOI contain (or not include)?” and “Why use an Memorandum of Understanding or a Term Sheet versus an LOI?” Capstone looks at an LOI (and all of its derivatives) as a “marketing” document.  […]

Strategy First… and Second… and Third

Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal had an article about how poorly large private equity deals have performed.   No wonder.  What value do they bring to the company?  Stripping off and selling key assets, re- re-leveraging the balance sheet.   How does this financial engineering grow or improve a company? Well, maybe some financial discipline is needed.  But […]

Capstone Webinar: Discovering the Right Markets for Growth

Capstone Webinar: Discovering the Right Markets for Growth David Braun, CEO of Washington, DC- based external growth consulting firm Capstone, is hosting a webinar with Capstone Senior Analyst Matt Craft. There is a unique opportunity in the next 12-15 months to grow your business through M&A.  However, before you start to go after acquisition prospects, […]

Market Drops 2%!

Nothing like today’s considerable drop in the market to remind everyone that the economy remains on shaky ground.  I stand by my past prediction that the market will not improve dramatically for another 12 months. This turmoil does two things.  It makes sellers more fearful that the bottom could fall out again and it may […]

One Reason for H-P

H-P is acquiring Palm for $1B and they say it is to position them further into the smartphone market which reportedly grew by over 60% last year.  H-P’s head of strategy, Shane Robison said “It’s an opportunity for us to get into a very big market”.   Understandable?  It is to me.  I’m not saying it’s […]

Making the Tough Decisions

When our new clients inquire about how we make prioritization decisions with limited data in the world of M&A, our answer is simple and straight-forward – you don’t need all the information as long as you have the CRITICAL information.  Consider this process: •         Step #1 – You need “screening” criteria that will help you […]

The Dow Above 11,000

Although it almost dipped back below today, the Dow broke the 11,000 mark earlier this week.  This psychological barrier will impact the M&A market since there is a strong correlation between the equities market and M&A, with M&A lagging a bit. I continue to expect an increase in deal making, with the biggest growth to […]

4 Notes About Cerebus’ Acquisition of DynCorp

Cerberus Capital Management agreed to acquire DynCorp for $1 Billion on April 12.  DynCorp is a Virginia-based defense contractor who focuses on low-technology, high people-centric government contracts in hostile areas like Afghanistan.  Cerberus, probably best known for its acquisition of Chrysler, sees this as a way to expand its government business. There were four things […]

Fasten Your Seatbelt

PWC reported recently that 46% of CEO’s in their survey indicate they plan to sell their company, and of these 66% said they plan to sell within the next five years.  The primary reason cited in the report is to diversify and create liquidity. My experience with CEO’s of privately held firms is they typically […]

Capstone Webinar: Finding Opportunity for Growth in Tough Times

Capstone Webinar: Finding Opportunity for Growth in Tough Times CPE Credit Awarded Thursday, April 8, 2010; 1:00 PM ET David Braun, CEO of Washington, DC- based external growth consulting firm Capstone, is hosting a webinar. David will focus on where you can find opportunity for growth in the toughest economy in a generation.  His main […]

Road Trip

I recently had the opportunity to drive over 1,500 miles over a five-day span throughout the southeastern US.  Two things stood out to me during my drive.  One was the number of shuttered motels, empty and fenced-in distribution centers, and vacant storefronts in small towns and strip centers.  All glaring examples of the on-going economic […]

9 Out of 10 CFOs Agree

According to CFOs recently polled by Merrill Datasite, “87.1% of respondent are considering M&A activity as a means to grow.”   We at Capstone agree – the time is right to make a BOLD move – growing proactively through external growth.  Our clients are using acquisitions and investments to create a competitive advantage by adding capability […]

Cautious Optimism From CPAs

I just spoke at the Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants Spring Conference and the general sentiment was cautious optimism for the next 12 months.  Several attendees mentioned they only see distressed companies selling and at 0.5x revenues.  Another mentioned his firm has lots of cash and no debt but they are hesitant to part […]

Earnouts – Bridging Expectations & Risk Gaps

Earnouts – Bridging Expectations & Risk Gaps

Valuing a for-sale opportunity becomes more challenging during periods of economic and financing uncertainty. During an economic boom, sellers are often able to obtain top dollar due to increased competition among buyers, with readily available financing options. However, in today’s market, buyers are more cautious about the businesses they are buying and the amount they […]

Times Have Changed

“There are a lot of companies that are flushed with cash, they want to do deals and targets that feel that they are 20 percent below their historic highs so they are not as interested in doing a deal,” he explained. “So that’s the right territory for a lot of unsolicited bids.” I agree with […]

Capstone Webinar: M&A: From LOI to Close

M&A: From LOI to Close CPE Credit Awarded Thursday, March 11, 2010; 1:00 PM ET David Braun is hosting a webinar with Capstone Senior Vice President Wes Teague. Building on the success of our last webinar on Contemporary Legal Issues in M&A, Capstone is presenting a new program that will lead you through one of […]

On Credit: What About Commercial Loans?

Banks are still not lending much these days and last year  had their sharpest decline in lending in 67 years.  A friend who is a Vice President at a major US bank recently told me: “We have lots of money to lend, just no one that we want to lend it to.”   So how […]

Honing the Approach with Owners

Honing the Approach with Owners

Clients always want to know how  we can quickly understand the perspective of the owner of the acquisition target.  Over the past 15 years focusing on the privately-held, not-for-sale space, we have a 98% success rate getting our clients in meaningful conversations and meetings with companies that are deemed to be a strategic fit. The […]

Getting Creative with Deal Structure

Getting Creative with Deal Structure

More and more I am seeing creative deal structuring in today’s M&A market.  This comes as little surprise.  The credit markets remain quiet; companies are not growing their way out of financial stress and smaller firms often finding themselves squeezed by larger companies who offer more products and better terms. So what is a small […]