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3 Tools to Streamline M&A Deal Flow in 2018

 With the start of the new year come the resolutions, as we all look to become better people and improve our quality of life.  One thing that people frequently resolve is to better manage their time. When it comes to the work side of time management, there are no shortage of strategies and tools to help you become a more efficient and effective worker.  If you’re more efficient at your job, you can reap potential financial rewards, reduce stress and even improve your work/life balance.  So it’s easy to see that there’s plenty of motivation to make these kinds of changes.

For those in the financial sector, 2018 is going to be a year where efficiency is critical. According to a recent Deloitte consulting survey, 2018 is poised to be a sizable year for M&A deal flow, this according to more than 1,000 U.S.-based executives at corporations and private equity firms.  Deloitte noted that more than two-thirds of these people expect M&A deals to increase in the next 12 months.  Not only is the volume expected to grow, but according to survey respondents, deal size will likely increase (63 percent) or stay the same (34 percent) as compared to 2017. The survey adds that the greatest areas for potential M&A activity are in “machine learning, robotics, artificial intelligence and advanced analytics.”  

With all this potential, here are some tools to ensure the 2018 is your most productive year yet:

  • Virtual Data Rooms: When it comes to a merger or acquisition, the management of content in a safe and secure environment is of paramount importance.  For years, businesses have been relying on things like FTP, cloud storage and file sharing platforms for collaboration on sensitive information.  But from both an efficiency and security standpoint, virtual data rooms have supplanted these services, and their use case capabilities aren't just limited to deal due diligence either. Virtual data rooms can help streamline workflow for capital raising, investor reporting, fundraising, loan syndications, and NPL/RPL sales. Companies like SmartRoom offer VDRs that offer real-time content management with enterprise-grade security on a dedicated web platform.  It allows people to share documents, collaborate and streamline workflows to ensure greatest efficiency. Virtual data room's like SmartRoom offer advanced features like custom reporting, content synchronization, shareable links, and integrations with Microsoft Office Online which makes collaboration easier and more efficient. Also, if virtual data room is built on an open API like SmartRoom, you can integrate secure file sharing in your other systems to streamline workflow even further.
  • Industry-Specific CRMs: Off-the-shelf platforms provide CRM services up to a point.  The problem is that, in the financial services world, you really need something that delivers services based on deal execution, including workflows and necessary reporting.  One such firm that delivers precisely that is DealCloud, which offers everything from prospect intelligence to process management to industry research and pipeline reports.  The firm works with such Wall Street heavyweights as Morgan Stanley, UBS and Prudential.  Their system is also sold through SmartRoom and is a powerful addition to their virtual data room.
  • Post-Merger Integration Solutions: When it comes to executing a merger or acquisition, so much time is wasted because of a piecemeal approach with software. While one program can track progress, another may provide documentation or real-time reporting.  With post-merger integration tools like IBM’s M&A Accelerator, this is all seamlessly integrated in one package.  This increases productivity, reduces potential risk and enhances compliance while accelerating the realization of value on a deal.  This package is also sold through SmartRoom, and can be bundled with other products to help keep costs down.

2018 is positioned to be a big year in the M&A market.  With greater efficiency, you can deliver better, more timely results for your clients.  An end-to-end deal management platform like SmartRoom is a great place to begin your goals of better time management.  With that, you’ll be able to realize all the benefits that it can deliver.

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