Businesses engage actively in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) as they grow, and financial due diligence is a critical step. There is no deal that can go through without adequate due diligence, and financial due diligence is often the most time-consuming step. In addition to financial, legal, tax, human resources, and ESG compliance, diligence checks encompass a vast array of areas. This blog discusses the financial aspect of diligence inquiries.
FDD – What is it?
Due diligence refers to an investigation into a company’s financial affairs. The purpose of this is to confirm the relevance and veracity of historical and forecasted trends in a company.
Industry, scale of business, and company size affect the scope of the FDD exercise. FDD generally focuses on the following areas:
- Revenue generation analysis, cash flow analysis, and margin analysis.
- Taxes, interest, depreciation, working capital, financial debts and liabilities, as well as projected financial numbers are taken into consideration when determining revenue sustainability.
- The identification of potential liabilities and commitments
- It is also important to evaluate other crucial variables that can have a significant impact on the business.
What is the best time to run a Financial Due Diligence?
The FDD process should begin once the letter of intent outlining the deal structure has been finalized by the buyer and seller. A financial due diligence process has two sides: a buy-side due diligence process, and a sell-side due diligence process.
A potential buyer can assess the viability of an acquisition based on the FDD report. Furthermore, it allows the buyer to determine if the acquisition price is reasonable and if there are any deal-breakers.
Can you tell me how long it takes?
A FDD can take anywhere from two weeks to two months. Based on the size of the company being acquired and the scope of the diligence, this timeframe may vary – financial due diligence report
Due Diligence Types
Due diligence for the buyer
FDDs of this type are performed by acquirers or buyers who intend to acquire a target company. Private equity firms, venture capital firms, strategic investors, investment banks, family offices, sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, insurance companies, etc., can all be buyers. The primary focus of a buy-side FDD is the target company’s financial health. The process involves analyzing a company’s revenues, expenses, cash flow, balance sheet, debtors and creditors, profitability, growth rate, market share, etc.
In order to gain a thorough understanding of the target’s financial health, a buyer would conduct Buy-side Financial Due Diligence. As a result, the target company’s financial position should be established as healthy and stable, with a solid forecast ahead, in the acquirer’s best interest.
Vendor due diligence (sell-side)
A sell-side FDD is performed by a seller or vendor who is selling a business. In order to ensure no hiccups in the transaction, this process focuses on areas of interest for potential acquirers or buyers.
The Sell-side Financial Due Diligence assists the seller by way of an internal audit, helping uncover issues that might otherwise have gone unnoticed. Sell-side financial due diligence requires the same amount of effort, just that it is conducted from a different point of view.
What is the importance of Financial Due Diligence?
The FDD provides insight into the company’s financial performance and its ability to generate profits in the future. You will be able to determine the strengths and weaknesses of the company through it.
Having this knowledge will enable you to make better decisions about how to proceed. If you decide to buy the company, you will know how much money you need to invest. Also, you’ll know what kind of return you can expect.
In addition, financial due diligence can reduce acquisition costs and facilitate better negotiations. It is less likely that you will overpay for a company if you learn more about it.