Watermark Advisors is Giving A Master Class in Mergers & Acquisitions to be Held in Greenville, SC on January 22nd

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Companies in the Carolinas and Georgia now have the opportunity to learn about the comprehensive process involved in mergers and acquisitions in order to prepare more effectively and improve outcomes. Watermark Advisors, a 12-year old Greenville investment bank, is bringing a one-day class to leaders of companies that are interested in growing their business through M&A.

Is conventional wisdom true that the vast majority of M&A deals fail to meet the acquirer’s return on investment goals? Darden Business School Dean, Robert Bruner, set out to discover the truth in his 2005 book "Deals from Hell". In his research, he reviewed over 130 M&A studies (event, accounting, executive surveys and clinical). His work is likely the most comprehensive review of M&A performance ever conducted. Bruner’s research concluded that for acquirers, only 20-30% of all transactions earn returns significantly in excess of the cost of capital. Said another way, the vast majority of acquirers do not create shareholder value from all of their M&A efforts.

Bruner further concludes that the outcome of failed M&A strategies include: destruction of the acquirer’s market value, financial instability, an impaired strategic position, organizational weakness, a damaged reputation and in some circumstances, a violation of ethical norms and laws. Why does M&A failure occur at such a high rate? Poor choices, poor execution, cognitive biases of over-optimism and bad external conditions all are contributing factors. This problem speaks to the real issue that most acquirers are not prepared to execute M&A strategies properly.

Companies in the Carolinas and Georgia now have the opportunity to learn about the comprehensive processes involved in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in order to prepare more effectively and improve outcomes. Watermark Advisors, a 12-year old Greenville investment bank (Member FINRA/SIPC), is bringing a one-day class to leaders of companies that are interested in growing through M&A. The class will be held on Thursday January 22 at the Poinsett Club in Greenville, SC. Companies that would benefit from the class are ones that have either completed an acquisition in the past, have wanted to complete an acquisition, or would like to do so in the future.

As a result of past failures or lack of readiness while undergoing an acquisition, companies waste time and resources and do not meet their goals. “What is novel about our class is its comprehensiveness,” says Hagen Rogers, Executive Managing Director with Watermark. “While we review the basics that are necessary for the transaction phase, we will discuss all the processes that are required to do M&A well. Many companies often do not recognize or implement these basic principles.” Rogers will teach the class. In addition to processes of a transaction phase, the class will also cover best practices in how to prepare for M&A and how to integrate an acquisition after the transaction is closed.

The cost of the class is more affordable than existing alternatives. Typically, the content of a class like this is only available in weeklong seminars held at a major university as part of an executive education series and is very expensive. Watermark’s class gives participants—whether one or several from each firm—knowledge and understanding that allows them to “master” the processes of M&A for their company. The fee for this interactive and engaging class includes a Poinsett Club lunch and wine and beer networking at the end of the day. A detailed program is available at http://www.watermarkadvisors.com. For inquiries and to register, contact Dee Grumbos by January 19 at dgrumbos(at)watermarkadvisors(dot)com.

About Watermark Advisors. Headquartered in the rapidly growing city of Greenville, SC, Watermark Advisors is a 12-year-old investment banking firm that specializes in mergers & acquisitions and private placement financing transactions for clients. Since July 2002, Watermark has facilitated mergers, acquisitions, sell-side M&A, private placements of equity capital, acquisition financings, valuations, fairness opinions and strategy consulting. Watermark serves clients in a broad range of industries including: software, energy, staffing, manufacturing, recycling, online retail, logistics, financial services, cloud services, retail, pharmaceuticals, and nanotechnology, among others. Watermark has been a FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) member since 2004. We are trusted advisors to C-suite executives, boards and owners in areas of strategy, private capital financings and growth through acquisitions (preparation, transaction, and integration phases). Our team of bankers and advisors help our clients build best practices to become more profitable and significant in their markets. We also have strong expertise in helping clients prepare and execute a sale of their division or company.

About Hagen Rogers, Executive Managing Director with Watermark Advisors. The more than 100 client assignments that Rogers has successfully completed in his 18-year investment banking career include sell-side, buy-side mergers and acquisitions, public and private capital financings, valuations, expert witness testimony and fairness opinions. Prior to directing Watermark, Rogers served investment banking clients as Vice President at Wachovia Securities. He began his career with NationsBank in corporate banking and with Chase Securities in investment banking. He is a member of the Southern Capital Forum and Financial Executives Network Group. In addition, since 2007 Rogers has spoken nationally to hundreds of CEOs on the topic of “How to Win in Investment Banking Transactions,” in Atlanta, Birmingham, Greenville, Knoxville, Los Angeles, Louisville, Phoenix, San Diego, and Seattle. Rogers started Watermark Advisors in 2002.

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Dee Grumbos
Watermark Advisors
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