Growth & Exit Strategies

I just chaired a conference in London, Growth & Exit Strategies, with over 100 software industry CEOs, CFOs and private equity managing directors and partners, and high level executives from buyers such as EMC, Ness Technologies and Wipro. We had speakers and delegates from 19 countries around the globe, the networking and exchanging of thoughts and viewpoints was particularly thought provoking and productive. As one attendee put it: A great day. Extremely useful to me in these rocky times.

The speakers were clearly in agreement that this will be a protracted downturn and the boom times we recently experienced are not returning soon. Many of the panelists concluded that there is significant market segment consolidation going on currently, and that segment consolidation is the most important driver when timing exits. Thus, it does not make sense to wait for the next M&A boom to consider an exit.

The good news is Corum is coming off the busiest October in its 23 year history we continue monitoring hundreds of buyers around the world making strategic acquisitions, though valuations are somewhat lower. Further, they have large treasuries to do the cash deals, which, as Rainer Debus said, are the structure the larger acquirers, like EMC, prefer. And, with cash, there is so much you can do in todays environment to generate wealth.

Most speakers seemed to agree that doing nothing right now is not a good option; it may only get much worse - its tough to sell your company when business is way down. It is better to be prepared and proactive now, rather than be caught off guard. With that in mind, we invite you to have a confidential call with our market analysts to discuss your company (or portfolio investment) and your opportunity for a successful transaction in todays environment.

Posted by , Managing Director on 4 December 2008
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