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M&A How Industry Leaders Structure Their Deals – Fee Guide 2017

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Each year, multiple Mergers & Acquisition transactions and deals with a combined value of hundreds of millions of dollars are structure and closed on a worldwide basis. These transactions represent multiple industries, which reflect the vast amount of fees that also take place and vary from one industry to the other.

During the year of 2017, Firmex and Divestopedia have released their second annual Mergers & Acquisition Fee Guide that dispels how of advisory firms and other associated professionals across multiple industries structure their M&A fees.

With there being a large lack of transparency within this industry as a whole, it is difficult to fully determine what fees are being charged across various markets spectrums. However, the results indicated below reflect the fee structure that represents 671 professionals within the general investment banking and advisory industry on a global basis –all of who were willing to participate in the study of largely middle market mergers & acquisition fees.

Global Responses

In an effort to obtain a wider geographic perspective on the results gathered from this study, the following reflects responses from professionals that worked in the investment banking, M&A and similar industry from across the globe.

From a global perspective, the US takes the lead with respect to the total participants represented in this study at 42%, followed by the Western Europe / Scandinavia region that represents 32%.

Additional regions represented reflect a decline in terms of their level of participation to include Canada, Latin America, and Asia, all of which represent 6%. Eastern Europe / Russia represent 3% of the total participants, whereas Australia and the Middle East both represent 2%. Africa had the lowest level of participation, which represents 1%.

Responses Based on Market Sector

The lion’s share of the participants were Investment Bankers and/or Mergers & Acquisition Advisors. They account for a total of 471 or 70% of the total respondents that have structure deals during the year of 2017.

Seventy-four or 11% of them represent the Business Development industry, whereas 51 or 7% represent Business Brokers. Lawyers and Attorneys account for a total of 34 of the total respondents surveyed which represents 5% and 33 or another 5% is represented by professionals who work in other industries.

Only 15 Accountants were represented in the 678 respondents, which is a reflection of only 2%, which represent the lowest industry included in this survey.

Transaction Value

The majority of the respondents, (37%) have indicated that the minimum deal size worked on at their farm is $5 million or lower, whereas deals that are $100 million or more is only represented by 4% or 18 of the total 678 respondents. What this indicates is that the larger the deal the fewer respondents. This means that more mid-size deals have taken place in the range of $5 to $10 million, which reflects 24% and 17% of the total respondents respectively. 11% represent deals with a value of $20 million and only 7% represent transactions valued over $50 million.

The transactions represented here are associated with industries that include the generalist market, which represents 23%, the manufacturing, media, and telecommunications, as well as the technology industry all of which represent 14%. These areas were followed by the consumer and retail markets and the healthcare industry, both of which represent percent 8%.

Other industries include energy and power, financial services, other miscellaneous industries and the real estate industry, all of which represent 7%, 6%, 4%, and 2% respectively.

Success Fee In Relation To the Deal Size

After all is said and done, it’s the success fee that rewards professionals who structure and close deals in the M&A industry, most of which are rewarded very handsomely for their efforts. However, the majority of the success fees are impacted greatly based on the size of the deal. As the deal increases in value, the success fee experiences a decrease in relation to the total value of the deal.

Deals with a value of $5 million typically earn success fees between 4% and 6%, and in some cases between 2 to 4%, whereas others are between 6 – 8%.

The higher value deals such as those valued at $10 million have lower fees between 2 and 4%, however, some earn between 4 and 6%.

Transaction deals valued at $20 million typically earn between 2 to 4% which is reflected by the majority of the respondents (46.9%) whereas others 25.3% typically earn between 1 and 2% in success fees.

Obviously, the larger transactions valued at $50 million, typically earn between 1 to 2% or 2 to 4% in succession fees for each deal. And consequently, the larger deals valued at $100 or $150M typically earn between 1 and 2%.

Although these fees vary, there does appear to be a pattern which, suggest that there are industry standards or market rates that appear to be consistent with similar success fees earned within this industry.

Full PDF report:  Firmex.com/resources/ma-fee-guide-2017

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Finance

Young Money: How To Fund A Startup

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Have you got a great idea for a business and now you want to make it happen? You’re not alone. While every business with the idea, commercialising it is a whole new site of skills. Getting a startup business up and running is a challenge for anyone who has not done it before.

Entrepreneurs don’t usually have the ideas, i.e. they’re not the creative talent. They’re the people, the ideas creators turn to, when they want to see how far they can take the idea and turn it into a viable business.

The start up phase of any business involves a lot of working hard, but not exclusively, it also requires investment. Seed money can come from various sources. Without the money, to get started and provide ongoing investment as the business shows promise, your venture may take too long to mature and a competitor takes your place in the eye of the consumer. So where can the investment come from?

What’s Available?

There are a lot of different funding options available for small businesses, and they all offer their benefits. You can find some examples of the most popular methods below, along with some additional information to help you choose which route might be best for you.

Personal Finance/Loans

You will need to invest in yourself, i.e. put some of your own money in. If you have not got savings, consider other options, like your home loan. This is a hugely popular option for start ups that fail to get funding from other sources. Caveat Emptor: Always seek professional advice from your accountant, lawyer etc before taking on debt.

So if you have money saved up or can get a loan from a bank, funding your business will be a fast process. As aforementioned, there will be a personal risk here, but you won’t have to prove to anyone that your business will work, making it great for those who can’t get further than a concept without some capital.

Business Loans

Some banks and governments will offer loans to new businesses. In most cases, you will have to have existing cash flow to make this work, limiting the successful startups will have with it.

Angel Investors

If you can convince an investor with the money to back your idea, you won’t have to look at other types of funding for business, as you will have both money and support. This isn’t always easy to find, and you will have to prove that your idea is worth their time, making it hard for those with nothing but a concept.

Personal Risk vs. Sacrificing Freedom

The choice you make when you’re choosing how your company will be funded largely rests on what is more important to you.

If you are willing to take on personal risk, using your own money can be a great way to go, as it will give you all the freedom you need to build the business you’ve been dreaming about.

For those who would rather keep their money safe, making a couple of compromises along the way can be a small price to pay for an investor or venture capital. This is a very personal decision to make.

Why Isn’t The Bank An Option?

A lot of startups find disappointment when they approach a bank for a loan to get themselves off the ground.

Unfortunately, history has shown that being too willing to offer new businesses money can result in heavy losses, and banks have learned for their mistakes. Before you can convince a company like this to support your venture, you will need to prove that it can make enough to pay it back, and most startups just don’t have the income.

Choosing the funding option which you use for your startup has always been a challenge. It’s becoming more common to find businesses which cost nearly nothing to get started, opening the doors to another idea for you to consider.

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Finance

Best Cryptocurrency to Buy – Which Is Best?

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A lot of people might say that cryptocurrency’s big moment has ended. After the sharp rise and precipitous fall of bitcoin, many strait laced investors soured on the idea of crypto investment. Crypto’s 15 minutes of fame were over, the thinking was, and it was time to move your money back to safer, and more standard commodities.

This, however, is just not true. Cryptocurrency continues to be a sound investment, if you know the best cryptocurrency to invest in. We’ve compiled a list of four great picks below.

Ethereum

Ethereum is sometimes thought of as bitcoin’s chief rival, which perhaps makes it the second-most famous cryptocurrency. Ethereum is also commonly thought of as an expansion of blockchain technology beyond bitcoin. It is traded as a cryptocurrency, but it also has value as a decentralized computing platform.

Ethereum includes a programming language that runs on blockchain. So, it is used by developers to create apps, including health and security infrastructure, music licensing services, and even anonymous browsers. Ownership of an Ethereum token is recorded on the shared blockchain ledger, as it would be on any cryptocurrency.

However, Ethereum expands this practice to record the ownership of copyrights, music, documents, financial instruments: anything imaginable. By purchasing Ethereum, you are investing in this network, rather than the security as such. For this reason, Ethereum is an excellent investment and one that the savvy investor should be scoping out.

Bitcoin

For fame and notoriety among the cryptocurrencies, none can match bitcoin, the original cryptocurrency in many people’s minds. Now more than a decade old (the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto published the bitcoin white paper in 2008), bitcoin has had its share of ups and downs.

For the savvy investor, though, bitcoin can still be a sound investment. After the massive — and massively famous — December 2017 peak, the price of bitcoin has held steady between $3,000 and $6,000 per coin. As bitcoin matures as a security, it is looking more and more like a place to park your money, rather than the white-hot investment it was two years ago. This is not a downside, because investors need (and will take) both options.

Dogecoin

It started as a joke — a play on the classic “doge” meme. But since its inception in 2013, Dogecoin has grown to a market cap of over $312 million dollars in April 2019, with values soaring as high as $2 billion in January of 2018. Dogecoin’s value fluctuations will be familiar to anybody who has traded in penny stocks. It maintains a steady mean value, punctuated by regular spikes in its price.

The trick, as it were, is to buy it just after a spike in its price, and to sell it during the next spike. While Dogecoins are not a strong long-term investment, they can be a decent swing investment if you have the time and energy to monitor them. The origins may be silly, but the money is very real.

Litecoin

Litecoin is a cryptocurrency specifically developed for zero-cost payments. Litecoin was developed to have a faster transaction confirmation than Bitcoin. This emphasis on fast, secure transactions has made Litecoin one of the most popular coins with businesses interested in security.

For this reason, the value of a single Litecoin has risen from $30 to $78 in the past six months, well below the mean value. This is the perfect opportunity for an investor to swoop in. As security becomes increasingly important to businesses across the board, Litecoin begins to look like a better opportunity than ever.

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Finance

How to double business profits and pay no federal tax

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Increasing profits and paying nothing in federal tax may sound like a pipe dream. Surely it’s impossible, right? Wrong, a company is already leading the way here and has provided proof that this is possible. Indeed, the richest man in the world pays nothing in federal tax. It’s shocking, it’s perplexing and it’s completely true. We’re of course referring to Amazon and the recent news that the business pays $0.

How on earth does this work and what can you learn from this? Let’s start with the definition of ‘Federal Tax’ as there are many different types of taxes.

Federal Tax

Federal Tax is a tax on income to pay for the resources used by the country. Individuals, business, trusts, and other legal structures aka entities incur the marginal tax rate depending on earnings in a financial year, the rate is applied to every dollar you earn.

Individuals are taxed at source and at a minimum of 10% or as much as 39.6% depending on, which income bracket your total income sits.

Businesses have more flexibility and their rate could be somewhere between 21% and 35%. More on Federal Tax here.  However as we’ve alluded to, there are ways to end up paying $0 tax just like Amazon, so here’s how they’ve managed it in 2019.

The Success Of The Company

Amazon’s record is incredibly impressive, regardless of which way you slice it. Between 2017 and 2018 the profits of the business actually doubled from $5.6 billion to $11.2 billion! The company is also currently valued at a total of $1 trillion. So, you would think that the business pays a fair level of tax right? Well, not exactly.

The Tax Break

According to the Institute on Taxation and Economic policy Amazon reported with $129 million for a federal income tax rebate. This equalled a tax rate of -1%. To compare this, the federal corporate income tax rate is 21%.

As such, it seems that part of the reason why Amazon is profitable is because they claim various tax credits and gain tax breaks for stock options from executives.

How Is This Possible?

In 2017, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was put forward to encourage more corporate citizenship and corporate tax was reduced from 35% to 21%. Luckily for Amazon and various other companies, it left a variety of tax loopholes in place that could be used to cut down the level of tax paid. Essentially, companies could avoid paying state income and federal taxes on about half of their profits.

Does Amazon Pay No Taxes?

Despite claims to the contrary, Amazon does pay taxes and is not a ‘no tax’ company. Indeed, through 2017, the company paid $412 million in total taxes. This included charges consumer sales taxes where applicable.

That said, it’s true that through 2017 and 2018 the company was searching for new tax breaks. They were able to claim billions through performance-based incentives by carefully selecting where to set up their headquarters.

As such, it is unlikely that Amazon will pay any federal tax this year. At the very least, they will see a massive level of savings. While people ask why Amazon would need to go to such lengths to save money regardless of how successful your business is, higher profits are always worth striving for.

There’s a lesson to be learned here too because Amazon and other companies avoid taxes in a way that is completely legally and fits regulations. They are not breaking the law, they won’t sink their business and they will grow their profits. As such, if you are running a business, you too should be pursuing tax breaks each year and cut down what you owe as much as possible. After all, if Amazon is taking these steps why shouldn’t you?

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