The Deal – Opportunities in a Sluggish Market

May 15th, 2008 |
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When times get tough, investors need to answer a few key questions: which industries are most attractive for investment? What deal structures are investors choosing? Where are sellers’ expectations?

In this podcast, although there was some consensus around the prediction that deal flow in the U.S. will drop below the impressive levels it has achieved in recent years, the expert voices of a panel discussion tackling “Opportunities and priorities in a sluggish economy” hold true to their panel title, expressing optimism at the opportunities that present in a down market.

From manufacturing to distribution and even food processing, all kinds of industries are facing tough decisions about how to continue in the current economic climate. That means opportunities for investors, and that’s just in the U.S. Abroad, particularly in Asia, there’s still a healthier climate for deals. About deals in Asia, Peter Berger, managing director at SAC Private Capital, says, “That’s where the dealflow is”

So, what’s going to happen? If we’re in the “eye of the storm,” as CCMP Capital Managing Director Jonathan Lynch says, then “it’s going to get worse.” But with an “inexhaustible supply of bad management,” even the so-called good times keep turnaround investors like Raquel Palmer at KPS Capital Partners busy. These days, with more shakeouts, they’re even busier than usual.

In addition to Berger, Lynch and Palmer, panelists included Steven Besen, partner at Shearman & Sterling; Timothy O’Hara, managing director and head of global credit business at Credit Suisse; and Hamilton “Tony” James, president and chief operating officer with The Blackstone Group.

The Deal’s Private Capital Symposium brought together private equity professionals, angel investors, buyout and venture investors, corporate acquisition professionals, M&A advisors and professional services providers. The event took place in New York’s Essex House, on May 14, 2008.

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