Mergers & Acquisitions

M&A Talk Podcast

M&A Talk is the #1 podcast on mergers & acquisitions. At M&A Talk we bring you exclusive interviews with experts in business sales, valuations, mergers and acquisitions, and more. We talk to the most experienced professionals in the industry to uncover their secrets.

Buying or Selling a Business That’s Not for Sale

Buying or Selling a Business That’s Not for Sale

John Dearing

Acquisitions, Corporate Development

What’s the not-for-sale marketplace? If you’re in corporate development, why should you consider businesses that aren’t actively for sale? Listen as we fully explore the world of corporate development, specifically how to pursue businesses that aren’t on the market. We’ll also learn the most common mistakes sellers make when they’re approached by a buyer and how sellers of businesses can position themselves in the best light when a potential buyer is courting them.

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Guest Profile

John Dearing is Managing Director and Partner at Capstone, where he leads the client engagement teams and operations while advising clients on strategic external growth alternatives. He has facilitated acquisitions and strategic deals in over 30 industries, including technology, prepared food, lending, insurance, and health care. He also guides many leading players serving the financial institutions market on in-demand issues such as analytics and growth strategy. For over 16 years, John has worked closely with credit unions, CUSO leaders, and board members on developing and implementing strategic growth plans, due diligence training, market and prospect evaluation, valuation, and the prioritization of growth initiatives. John’s expertise and insights regarding both M&A and credit unions have been published in articles across a number of media outlets. John is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) with an MBA from the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree from Bucknell University.

Topics Covered

  • What is the not-for-sale marketplace? [2:02]
  • What is corporate development, and what are its goals? [3:06]
  • Why would you pursue businesses that aren’t actively for sale? [4:57]
  • Do you exhaust those businesses that are on the market first? [6:15]
  • Why would a company outsource its corporate development? [7:30]
  • What types of companies tend to outsource their corporate development? [8:35]
  • How are the fees structured, and is it very common for corporate development to be outsourced? [9:07]
  • What’s the essence of corporate development? [10:49]
  • How difficult is it to approach businesses that aren’t actively for sale? [14:30]
  • What’s the biggest difference between those businesses that are for sale and those that aren’t? [18:17]
  • Do you see transactions all the way through, including the integration? [18:58]
  • What is your advice to sellers, and what’s the number one mistake they make? [19:43]
  • What happens when a seller doesn’t disclose a key issue? [22:23]
  • From a seller’s perspective, what’s the second most common mistake when approaching potential targets? [25:23]
  • Who can help the seller if their company isn’t currently for sale? [28:39]
  • The importance of knowing what buyers are looking for [29:10]
  • What’s the second most common mistake you see sellers make? [30:00]
  • What are some of the other common mistakes you see sellers make? [31:15]
  • When should an owner begin preparing for the sale? [33:00]
  • Why should sellers maintain relationships with several potential buyers? [35:50]
  • How do you maximize the price if you’re only negotiating with one buyer? [37:50]
  • The 3 phases of the corporate development deal process – Strategy > Relationship > Deal
    • The Strategy [38:45]
    • The Relationship [43:35]
    • The Deal [46:00]

Learn More



The Art of Selling a Business With $10 Million to $100 Million in Revenue

Written by Jacob Orosz, President of Morgan & Westfield

For a business to sell for what it’s really worth – or even more – you need to properly prepare. But too many entrepreneurs put off planning the sale of their business until the last moment. Acquired – The Art of Selling a Business With $10 Million to $100 Million in Revenue will help you prepare your business for sale and walk you through the sales process, dodging the pitfalls along the way. With a significant amount of your wealth tied up in your business, planning your exit is one of the most critical initiatives you’ll undertake.

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