2018 VC and M&A Forum: Maximizing Value in M&A Panel Recap

By: Ryan Perry

rjp-headshot-photo-2016-m0949892xb1386High level strategy, exclusivity and price. These were the themes of a panel on Maximizing Value in M&A at our recently-completed 2018 VC and M&A Forum. Corporate Partner Jon Gworek led the panel through discussions around exit strategies for venture-backed companies, which begins with the initial influx of venture dollars and culminates with a successful transaction.

Even early stage venture investors are already thinking about the exit strategy when the first venture dollars go in, confirmed Brady Bohrmann, Managing Director at Avalon Ventures. The challenge for early stage investors, Bohrmann elaborated, is to consider the evolution of the tech ecosystem rather than the market solely as it exists today.

Moving through the timeline of an exit scenario, Gworek asked the panel to describe the elements of a burgeoning M&A event. Sometimes, that can simply be an awesome offer, indicated Benjamin Howe, Chief Executive Officer and Head of Investment Banking at Boston, AGC Partners. But in most cases it’s not so clear. Often, companies have to balance the different constituencies of venture investors, who may wish to get their ROI quickly, and founders, who may wish to maximize potential value and may have an emotional connection to the company.

The panel also included a lengthy discussion of financial versus strategic buyers. Raz Zia, a Partner at Aldrich Capital Partners, a private equity investor, and Stephen Faberman, Chief Legal Officer and Chief Compliance Officer at Progress Software, a historic strategic investor, traded war stories on this point. In either case, the buy side representatives in the room agreed that there is no substitute for CEOs being active in the ecosystem from early days. The most likely buyer may not be the one you know, but it is likely the one who knows you.

Stay tuned for our next panel recap: Terms & Conditions Made Simple.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s