Think you can only acquire a for-sale company? Think again. Although it may seem impossible to buy a “not-for-sale” company, a company that is “not-for-sale” simply means it is not actively thinking about selling. However if the owner receives a compelling offer, they might change their mind. Here are four reasons why a not-for-sale acquisition […]

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“I’m not interested in selling my business right now.” “We already have a strategic plan in place.” “We are already talking to another buyer.” “Why should I listen to you? I get asked to sell all the time.” “I may sell in a few years when my company has a higher value.” “Who are you????” […]

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Owners are usually skeptical or defensive when asked about selling their “not-for-sale” company. In fact, many will hang up or refuse to consider your offer. If you do manage to break through and get the owner to agree to a first meeting, your job is to put them at ease, dissuade fears and communicate the […]

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Does this sound familiar? You want to grow through acquisitions, but there are no good companies to acquire. While it may seem like there are absolutely zero acquisition prospects, usually that is not the case. Many companies struggle to find acquisition prospects because they are focusing on only on industry partners, suppliers, or competitors they […]

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Many company owners and executives know that M&A could hugely accelerate their growth. But they hold back for several common reasons. Let’s take a look. 1. “There Are No Suitable Companies to Buy” You’re probably right—almost. There are no suitable companies for sale. That does NOT mean there are no great companies to buy. You just have […]

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Some might say the best time to pursue an acquisition is when the right opportunity comes along, but they’re wrong. The best time to pursue M&A is whenever you are ready. The best opportunities are those that you seek out proactively. If you wait around for opportunity to come to you, you may be missing […]

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When meeting an owner for the first time, your goal is not to instantly sign a deal. You first want to get to know them and make them feel comfortable about selling their business to you. In order to do this, there are some important questions to ask and subjects to broach, which I’ve covered […]

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When contacting an owner about acquisitions, don’t be surprised to hear “no.” Most owners, when asked about selling their “not-for-sale” business will automatically refuse simply because it’s unexpected. Remember, for an owner focused on running the day-to-day operations of his business, this offer is coming out of the blue. There are, of course, a number of […]

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CEO Paul Villella of HireStrategy recently shared why he sold his company ─ despite not actively looking to sell ─ and the results one year after the acquisition. Paul addressed a packed room of CEOs, CFOs and senior-level executives from the Washington-DC area at “Grow or Die: A Panel Discussion on Middle Market M&A” hosted […]

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When you’re pursuing an acquisition, making meaningful connections with the right people at the right companies can be challenging. Who is the right person to contact? How can you go about contacting them? And once you do get in contact, what do you talk about to capture their interest? These questions are I frequently hear […]

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Family Dollar and Dollar Tree finally have reached a deal to merge for $8.5 billion. This merger comes after months of negotiations between Family Dollar, Dollar Tree and Dollar General. Family Dollar and Dollar Tree originally came to an agreement last July, but Dollar General quickly stepped in with a higher offer. Interestingly, although Dollar […]

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With a 70% failure rate for acquisitions, it seems like the odds are against you from the beginning. Before you get scared off, however, let’s take a closer look at what that 70% means. The 70% failure rate is mainly based on large, publicly traded transactions because large transactions must be reported to the SEC, […]

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Why actively pursuing not-for-sale companies can lead to a better acquisition than a for-sale opportunity. When searching for acquisition prospects, most people only consider for-sale acquisitions.  Usually these are offered by investment bankers, who carry a “book” of candidate companies. Restricting your search to for-sale opportunities is usually a mistake. I encourage clients to actively […]

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Sprint has dropped its bid to acquire T-Mobile due to regulatory pressure. Large, public transactions must be reported and should be regulated by law, of course, but this is an unfortunate setback for Sprint. After investing resources putting together the deal and lobbying for months, the company must walk away from it because of external […]

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“The best opportunities are the ones we’re pursuing and not the other way around.” This comment in The Wall Street Journal from Smadar Levi, CFO of MyHeritage.com, is one I wholeheartedly agree with. She is quoted in an article about the growing number of startups seeking to be acquired. With fewer financing options available to […]

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Facebook announced it will buy WhatsApp for $19 billion on February 19, 2014. There is no way that I can, in any credible means, justify or explain the purchase price because it’s absurd in my opinion. WhatsApp has no advertising revenues and charges each of its 450 million active users a yearly fee of just […]

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“Hello, I’d like to buy your company.” If this were the way I began my phone calls with owners, none of our deals would be successful. Speaking with owners, particularly of privately held, not-for-sale companies, requires the right strategy and approach. After all, you only have one chance to make a first impression and your goal in […]

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Many leaders take a reactive rather than proactive approach when it comes to M&A. They often realize that their organic growth is stagnant and they’ve got some money they can leverage, so they decide to make an acquisition. What do they do? They go find for-sale companies or respond to those that have found them. […]

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It’s that time of year again. The holiday season is a great occasion to spend time with family, celebrate with friends, give to charity, drink hot cocoa – and of course buy presents.  Beginning with Black Friday, holiday sales are out in full swing with retailers trying to entice consumers with the lowest prices on […]

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Many executives engaged in M&A believe in creating a long list of acquisition prospects. However, the goal of your M&A process should be to find the right companies. Obviously, it’s good to fill your pipeline with prospects, but you want to be sure these prospects match your strategic criteria. What good is a long list […]

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