Buy-Side M&A Advisory for the Lower-Middle Market


Buy-side M&A search is growing as competition to acquire well managed companies continues to heat up. The low hanging fruit was picked long ago. Private equity and family offices continue to move deeper into the lower middle market to find value, and specialize in niches find defendable segments.

The lower middle market is not the same as the middle market. It is characterized by vast numbers of companies, and a high percentage of them have material weaknesses. This makes the search process increasingly expensive.

Private equity firms, family offices, U.S. and off-shore strategic acquirors without an in-house business development group are common users of buy-side search. Developing all the skills in-house to run business development can be daunting and expensive, as the learning curve is long and steep, and technology continues to change what works and what doesn’t.

Hiring 20-somethings as business development people is inefficient and ineffective. You are forced to sort good deals from bad and waste your time in the process. Worse, you miss out on connecting with the large number of owners that won’t even talk with a Gen-X or Millennial. And worst, you diminish your brand when owners decide their time is being wasted and they block your caller ID and email domain.

Buy-side search can be broad-based and industry agnostic or pin-point specific. If you are very clear on your goals, we can identify targets down to six-digit NAICS codes, employee count, state or city. Then, with key acquisition candidates identified, we reach out to them with only our senior people. Almost all of our people have operating experience, and some are former CEOs. We can hold the high level conversations needed to develop a relationship with reticent owners.

If you want a broad based search, we offer outbound digital marketing services as well as tele, and traditional mail. We have run business development for a number of large institutions, and have paid our dues to learn what works and what doesn’t.

Every search program is custom-made based upon your unique needs. If you don’t have a strong business development capability, we can act as your outsourced BD group.

Our due diligence process ferrets out the weaknesses in these companies. We excel at financial analysis, but our unique skill is in the soft side of due diligence – assessing the company’s intellectual capital: its people, processes, relationships, organization, and innovation. We former operating managers and credit officers that can look at the company from very different perspectives than other investment banks. This ensures that a company can be leveraged safely and operated according to your plan.

For more see: Digital Marketing

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Mergers and AcquisitionsExit Planning          

Number of companies by employee count

– The number of companies explodes as employee count goes below 500. Finding the right platform company or add-on is very time consuming. Most lower middle market companies are not quality assets, and sorting the wheat from the chaff can be a daunting task.



Balance scale

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– Analytics – understanding the revenue model, the processes, the Human, Structural and Relational Capital – are critical to Mergers and Acquisitions.