We can assist the seller of a business or its lead advisor in preparing a data book to accompany the information memorandum, setting out what bidders would expect to be disclosed during the process.
A data book helps to summarize important information located in the data room in a professional and concise manner, without in-depth analysis or further interpretation. Although risks related to the deal and its value are not reported in the data book, the majority of such risks can be identified during data book preparation, and communicated to management, accordingly.
The main areas usually covered in the course of data book preparation include:
- Establishing the underlying, normalized financial performance of the business and its normal level of working capital;
- Assessing the reasonability and consistency of the accounting principles, and the adequacy of the accounting systems (in the data book we describe the subject without any assessments);
- Identification of any non-recurring or non-arms-length transactions;
- Analysis and description of the net operating assets of the business;
- Analysis of the funding structure of the business, along with its overall net debt position, capital expenditure needs, and future working capital requirements;
- Establishing the nature of any related party transactions;
- Analyzing and elaborating possible methods for the mitigation of identified tax issues, in order to increase the attractiveness of the business to potential investors;
- Commenting on the existing customs issues related to the entity’s activities.