Land What You Built Safely

CoPilot M&A engages all teams to eliminate the turbulence. Our team handles the necessary coordination, communication and drives the action. Together we develop the plan, know where we want to go, and then get there.

 

Focus on the Value & Risks

CoPilot works with you to build a clear plan, defining the values and risks. We then help your team build a taskforce to maximize this value, and mitigate these risks.

 

Turn off Integration AutoPilot

CoPilot builds and executes a transaction specific plan. Best practices, customized for you and specific to your acquisition.

 

Please Don't Do It Alone

CoPilot brings real world experience. We leverage this to prevent issues, increase speed and maximize value.

About CoPilot

Our value is having you control your destiny, whether buying or selling, but you always know we are there to guide you.  To enable you through direct involvement, but mitigate the risks of doing something metaphorically dangerous by yourself.

The Goal

The goal of our engagement is a positive, beneficial M&A transaction that is successful for both buyers and sellers, as that is the point of engaging in it.  Success comes from humans being engaged, not in theory, but in practice; being lead by experienced consultants who know what, when and how to get things done.  That is the goal, win-win; on time, low stress, high value.

Our Teams

Our teams consist of a project manager who is the organizer of all things. Planning and scheduling the pace of success, running the necessary collaboration to validate assumptions into facts, and communicate regularly to build and maintain confidence in the ‘deal’.  Deal dependent, we bring in legal, financial and specific due diligence expertise.  Each deal is aligned with a sponsor who has expertise in your industry to guide the process, but critically align it with success for both buyers and sellers.

We have a history of helping others achieve what they didn’t they they could.  We do this by not telling you what you want to hear, but often helping you understand what you need to hear.  We are a reality check, validating what you think you know, or identifying what you need to do.

Let's get connected.

"You are neither right nor wrong because the crowd disagrees with you. You are right because your data and reasoning are right."

Warren BuffetOracle of Omaha

"Our Business is really simple. When you look at deal and its structure looks like an octopus or a spider, just don't do it."

Timothy SloanCFO Wells Fargo

Contact a CoPilot Consultant

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How can we help you?

Contact Us and we'll get back to you for an initial consultation. We'd like to talk about your goals, timeline and concerns with buying or selling. We've been in your shoes, let us help you know what we know, avoid mistakes, solidify your plan and jumpstart your future.

Dave ArmstrongCoPilot Founder & Managing Partner

Our Services

Target Identification
Find & Filter
Find and filter based on criteria; flexible enough to not miss diamonds in the rough, and disciplined to not waste anyone’s time.

Find a Business
Due Diligence
Ask & Verify
Ask the right questions and validate the answers is due diligence.  Asking the wrong questions and trusting the answers is called risk.
Verify a Business
Merger Integration
Plan & Execute
The deal is not done when the deal gets signed.  It just is the beginning.  This is where you get the results you need.
Merge a Business

We often align M&A activity with dating; finding the right company, spending time to get to know them, and then coming together to create something better than you were before.  It is the essence of M&A, but often forgotten.

Let's get connected.

Go for a business that any idiot can run - because sooner or later, any idiot probably is going to run it

Peter LynchBusinessman and stock investor

I have never cared what something costs; I care what it's worth.

Ari EmanuelTalent Agent

Selling Your Business

1

Your Past Defines your Future Value.

When someone buys your company, the reason is for it to make money. Having your business demonstrate that it has made money, implies that the market is real, and you know how to serve it through marketing, sales, operations and customer service.
2

Have a Future Plan

Having a plan, derived from your experience in the past and your vision for the future, demonstrates that the historical performance can be sustained and maybe even improved. Not having a plan, implies that the business is dependent upon you to run it. Your plan should include how you will grow your existing customer base, reduce attrition, drive increased deal size and open more and more doors to new markets and customers.
3

Future Cash Flow

Cash is the output of running your business, how it is being used and how it will be used to invest in yourself; commonly called operating expense (OpEx) and expected fixed asset investment, (CapEX). The sustainment of existing cashflow and specific forecasts what is needed to do that, and forecasts in costs to grow it. Don't overlook the importance the variables that will drive changes in your OpEx/CapEx; They are deal killers.
4

Who Runs it and How it Runs

The team you have running the business, generating the revenue, using expenses and investing in the future will either increase the value or not. If the business needs you, the risk to the future increases, if it doesn't, the value of your business increases. You may have built it, but if the business depends on you, the future is risky. You should be working 'on the business' not in it.

CoPilot helps you do an internal evaluation and identifies those things going well and those things you need to fix, with a specific action to get it done.  All of which drives your valuation higher, speeds the process and mitigates problems; the trifecta of good deal making.

Let's get connected.

As you travel down life’s highway…whatever be your goal, you cannot sell a doughnut without acknowledging the hole.

Harold J. ShaylerLegendary Sales Guru

“Dealmaking [is] a profession unto itself – the world’s highest paying profession. Things don’t just fall into place by accident. A good dealmaker understands that it’s his job to finesse things into place.”

AnonymousUnknown Smart Person

If I had to run a company on three measures, those measures would be customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction and cash flow.

Jack WelchGE CEO / Guru

Buying a Business

1

Define an Acquisition Plan

Growing a company via acquisition must be evaluated against using the same resource (time & money) to grow it organically. Both have their pros and cons; or maybe a dual strategy makes sense. Creating a plan to grow what you already do (scale) or adding services/products to your offering you don't current provide (scope).
2

Find, Filter and Approach

Prospects will come from internal and external sources. Having a specific process and pre-defined roles to evaluate them sets the 'tone' for the rest of the relationship. A smooth, professional approach, creating simplicity out of the perception of complexity will establish you and your company as a serious buyer, even if it's your first time.
3

Due Dilligence

At this point, you have a formal agreement, in the form of a NDA and LOI. It's an exciting time. Due Diligence is critical to validating assumptions, asking the right questions, defining the strengths and weaknesses. It is the buyers opportunity to completely understand what they are buying. There is no other opportunity to do this; You can never be thorough enough to both identify the value and set the acquisition up for success post deal.
4

Architect the Proposal

No proposal gets created without know the value of the company. In addition to due diligence data, external market factors and recent comparable transactions drive the valuation. Get an external source to do it, they have more data than you and now is the time to get your legal docs created. The proposal is just the starting point to define what the buyer is willing to pay and it starts the negotiation process.
5

Document, Negotiate, Close

It's necessary to be formal at this stage. It's also important to keep the deal simple. Be focused on being detailed in your research, valuation, deal terms, integration plans, not on building a 'deal of the century' that is going to be confusing and fail. This is the stage that should be easier, don't make it harder.
6

Integrate, Integrate, Integrate

Integrating process and systems is hard, but not the most important. Bringing together leaders from two companies into an organization, defining roles and goals and having a unified, collaborative culture will make or break any deal, regardless of how the previous steps have gone, this is where a deal fails or succeeds. Success is define by the results, not by the signatures on deal documents.

CoPilot is right there with you, defining the approach, finding, filtering and acting as the extension of your plan.  We know the process, the pitfalls and how to mitigate your risks.  This is the time to do it right, validating assumptions, documenting details now, saves a failed deal or worse, failed business later.

Let's get connected.

The safest way to double your money is to fold it over once and put it in your pocket

Frank McKinney HubbardCartoonist, Humorist and Journalist

Explain the value and justify the cost - People don’t mind paying; they just don’t like to overpay.

Chris MurraySelling with EASE

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