News Corporate Development as a What?
Before there was CDaaS
Cameron Vernest, Managing Partner and Co-Head
You’d have to be living under a rock to not have heard of SaaS (Software as a Service). Most organizations now buy software under that model.
Flexibility, affordability, and ease of use are the primary drivers of this shift.
The SaaS model is now being applied to professional services: the so-called “SaaSification” of business is very much under way. It’s driving innovation and smart organizations get this.
Corporate Development as a Service, or CDaaS as we like to call it, rides that wave of SaaSification. The term is not as well known as SaaS but here at Spearhead we are changing that. The adoption of CDaaS for the most seasoned PE investors and acquisitive corporates, globally, has supercharged top-of-funnel deal flow activity and allowed them to close more deals. Similar to SaaS’s promises, CDaaS provides these sophisticated acquirers flexibility, affordability, and ease of use.
The challenges Corp Dev & PE teams face
The recent spike in M&A activity, levels of dry powder, and advances in tech/data/AI/ML mean that the Corporate Development and PE teams we support are working harder than ever before. Working harder is of course not sufficient to get deals done, and a new level of creativity and forward-thinking is required.
The challenge is that these teams are tasked with an extremely wide scope: identifying new targets, building relationships with them and their advisors, negotiating deal terms, carrying out due diligence, communicating internally (the board or deal committees), setting strategy, running post-acquisition integration projects – the list keeps going.
Bandwidth is always an issue (plus deals exacerbate this in spikes), and usually, it’s the top-of-the-funnel work that ends up taking a back seat to other M&A related activities, which are perceived as higher value.
Assume you have just finished your latest transaction. What happens next? Well, after taking five minutes to enjoy the outcome of the hard work put in over many months/years, it’s a quick scramble to find the next deal and begin the cycle all over again.
With an increasingly fast-paced and ever-changing environment, what worked in the past for most teams should be adapted to ensure success.
What is Corporate Development as a Service?
When I joined Spearhead Corporate Development’s parent company, FirePower Capital, over two and half years back, we were looking to solve the challenges these Corporate Development and PE teams faced. I had spent the previous decade running go-to-market teams for public or VC-backed tech companies such as Shopify, TradeGecko and BlackBerry. So, I went about solving this problem the only way I knew how: A tech-inspired outreach built on a sophisticated research engine delivered by experienced deal makers. The result is the SaaSification of the corporate development top-of-funnel deal flow for the most seasoned acquirers.
How we built it
- Old-school outbound calling combined with highly customized email and LinkedIn messaging by our experienced deal professionals to get through to business owners, and to cut through the noise of every other buyer doing the same.
- Developed a tech stack that would make the best SaaS companies drool with our rev ops, big data, AI, and ML capabilities.
- Built a outcomes-driven team, with a passion for M&A advisory and dealmaking, willing to put in the work no one else wanted to do so that we left no stone unturned for our clients,
As a result, Corporate Development as a Service was born.
CDaaS is the service and Spearhead is the partner built to support the most sophisticated acquirers and investors around the world. Maintaining relationships with acquisition targets over time and uncovering highly-qualified, ready-to-transact conversations all while letting our clients do what they do best – close deals.