Industry Specialization vs. Generalist
Is this a boutique investment bank that focuses on the industry in which my company competes or a generalist firm with a smattering of experience across a range of industries? Ultimately, can the investment banker understand my company, its competitive advantages within the context of its industry and communicate a compelling story to investors or buyers?
Demonstrating a track record of successfully closed transactions similar to the one being contemplated is where the rubber meets the road.
Approach Toward the Transaction Process
Does this investment banker customize each transaction process to the client’s situation or does he use a one-size-fits-all, taking the same approach for every deal?
Personal Network and Relationships
Does this middle market investment banker have a large network of genuine relationships with investor groups and buyers of deals? Since investing or buying companies is risky, personal relationships built on trust is a cornerstone of the deal business. Building relationships takes time and is the result of representing many transactions to these groups. Creating a database download or a list without the relationship component is ineffective.
Honest, Candid, High Quality Advice
Other than what you perceive in personal conversations, one of the easiest ways to research this is to contact references. Past clients and other professional advisors who have worked with this middle market investment banker can provide important feedback.
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How To Select A Middle-Market Investment Bank