Joel Espelien

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Joel Espelien has worked in a number of roles over a twenty year career in the technology industry. Most recently Joel served as Senior Advisor to Karmel Capital, where he advised on corporate spin-offs and M&A transactions, including the private-equity backed purchase of DivX LLC from Rovi Corporation and subsequent sale to Neulion, Inc, as well as the successful spin-off of Snaptracs, Inc. and its Tagg wireless pet tracking product from Qualcomm and the eventual two-stage sale to Whistle Labs and Mars Petcare. Joel has also served on the boards of multiple venture-backed companies resulting in successful exits, including AI startup IQ Engines (acquired by Yahoo) and IoT-for-AgTech pioneer 640 Labs (acquired by Monsanto/Climate Corporation). Joel has also written extensively on the future of video in his capacity as Senior Analyst for the Diffusion Group where he published 14 industry research reports as well as a widely recognized weekly blog. Previously, Joel was the Chief Business Officer, SVP of Strategy and General Counsel of PacketVideo, a pioneer in the mobile video market. While at PacketVideo, Joel led corporate development activities, including multiple buy-side acquisitions in the US and Europe, a groundbreaking technology partnership with Google that helped launch Android, a private-equity backed MBO and ultimately the sale of the company to NTT DoCoMo (Japan). Prior to PacketVideo, Joel was a corporate attorney at Cooley LLP in Palo Alto and San Diego, California. Joel is a member of the Bar in both Washington and California. He holds a JD/LLM (International and Comparative Law) from Duke University and a BA from St. Olaf College. Joel is fluent in Spanish and has done business throughout Spain and Latin America.

Recent Blog Posts:

2018 Top 10 Disruptive Trends: IoT Embraces Industry, Goes Vertical
IoT is more than just smart lightbulbs, learning thermostats and other connected home gadgets. Cisco’s forecast of 50 billion Internet-connected devices by 2020 gets closer to reality every day. However, what often gets overlooked is IoT’s impact on the enterprise. Connected devices drive the speed... Click here to read more
Posted by Joel Espelien, President on 13 March 2018
Trust the Process, Not the Tools: What the Delaware Supreme Court Just Said About M&A Valuation
What’s my company worth? As the global leader in private technology company M&A, we get this question more than any other. (Probably more than all other questions combined). Traditional investment banking dogma views valuation as a spreadsheet problem – a question of calculation, usually... Click here to read more
Posted by Joel Espelien, President on 21 December 2017
Common M&A Misconception: I don’t want to go to market too early
Nathan Rothschild famously said, “I made my fortune by selling too early”.   We get it. You believe in your company, your business and your market. You have to have this belief or you (and your company) wouldn’t have gotten this far. This is a good thing, not a bad thing.   At the same time,... Click here to read more
Posted by Joel Espelien, President on 28 July 2017
The reverse Amazon: What brick-and-mortar retailers need to know in light of Amazon's acquisition of Whole Foods
The business world was turned upside down last week by Amazon’s announcement of its $13.4 billion acquisition of Whole Foods. Supermarket stocks plummeted on the news with uber-analyst Jim Cramer predicting that Amazon will dominate the US grocery market within the next two years. Is the end truly... Click here to read more
Posted by Joel Espelien, President on 21 June 2017
Escrow Provisions in M&A Transactions, Part 2
As described in the previous post, escrow accounts are funds carved out of the seller’s proceeds for the benefit of buyers in order to secure indemnification obligations under M&A transactions. However, there are a couple of additional points that the parties may wish to consider.   The first... Click here to read more
Posted by Joel Espelien, President on 12 June 2017
Escrow provisions in M&A Transactions, Part 1
While parties to an M&A transaction do not expect to encounter major post-closing liability issues, transactions involving privately held sellers tend to contain escrow provisions to address buyer concerns over the seller’s financial ability to satisfy indemnification provisions contained in... Click here to read more
Posted by Joel Espelien, President on 9 June 2017
The Optimal Outcome: What private company CEOs can learn from the Yahoo-Verizon deal
Yahoo’s recently completed sale to Verizon for nearly $4.5B is clearly a major event in the world of technology M&A. Despite the size, drama and media attention such deals receive, however, the fundamental principles that go into achieving an optimal outcome remain the same, which means... Click here to read more
Posted by Joel Espelien, President on 26 April 2017
What's My Company Worth?


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