Is your company an add-on candidate?

Most business acquisitions by private equity firms have been “add-on” deals lately.
In private equity jargon, a large company acquisition is usually a platform acquisition, and a smaller company acquistion is most often an add-on  (or “bolt-on”, or “tuck-in”) acquisition. Add-on acquisitions are complementary to and synergistic with an existing platform company held by a private equity firm. Platform acquisitions dominate the headlines and represent most of the dollar volume, but add-ons now represent the majority of deals.
The trend toward a higher percentage of smaller private equity transactions is continuing this year, as private equity groups have shifted their attention to add-on opportunities. This upward trend in add-ons is occurring across all industries and regions of the U.S. according to Pitchbook, a private equity and venture capital market research firm. Pitchbook focuses on the higher end of the middle market (over $50M transactions), however we’re seeing increased interest in add-ons at the very low end (transactions under $10M) as well.  Click here for a copy of the Pitchbook Q4 2014 U.S. Private Equity Breakdown report.
According to Pitchbook, high valuations are at least partially responsible for the continuing increase in add-ons, which generallydon’t attract as much competition on the buy-side as large platform deals.
This is great news for company owners looking to sell. If you are considering selling a $5M+ revenue business, chances are good that one or more private equity firms would be interested in adding your business on to one of their platform companies. If you are looking to divest all or part of a company, now is the time to learn what it takes to properly position your company for a successful exit.
Understanding what sophisticated investors are looking for is key to ensuring that you don’t leave money on the table when you sell your business. For a discussion about whether your company is a candidate for selling to a private equity backed company, or to explore how you can develop your company into an acquisition target for this type of investor, Email or call Al Statz, 707-778-2040, in total confidence.