• Corporate Development
  • Intapp DealCloud

Yearly strategy planning for corporate development teams: How to create pipeline visibility and alignment

Like most of us, our corporate clients spent the month of January setting goals and realigning on their strategies for the year ahead. This exercise is a great way to set expectations and get organized, but it also presents two very important questions: Where should this strategic goal-tracking information live, and how can firms easily refer back to it as the year progresses?

DealCloud’s cloud-based technology not only serves as a relationship and pipeline management system, but also serves as a single source of truth where corporate professionals can house data, calendars, and corporate strategy for firmwide visibility. Having a centralized platform lets senior leaders, corporate development professionals, and strategy teams better manage their responsibilities and make better-informed decisions.

Review these common questions that arise in strategy planning and learn how your teams can use DealCloud to support their decision-making.

Buy, partner, or build?

When it comes to expanding business, firm leaders often have three choices: Buy, partner, or build. Assessing the value of each opportunity requires a deep level of market and industry knowledge.

Before committing to a decision, your team must take the time to weigh the pros and cons of each option. If, for example, an opportunity involves entering a new market, it might be better to acquire a company than to take on the risks associated with building in a brand-new market where your firm has no brand awareness. Conversely, if your firm already has a strong brand presence within a market, building might be the best strategy. Additionally, if your team is looking to create a point of contact, you can start with finding the ideal partnership candidate.

Leveraging proprietary and third-party data can help professionals make better-informed decisions on their strategies, especially in new markets. DealCloud’s DataCortex provides dealmakers with access to data sets from providers like PrivCo, SourceScrub, Factset, S&P Global Market Intelligence, Equilar, and Pitchbook in one unified platform. When relevant data is brought into the fold of everyday work, firms can work smarter and faster to plan ahead and make informed decisions.

How should our firm move forward with buying a company?

When new buying opportunities arise, your firm professionals need to be able to act quickly and make informed decisions. However, figuring out next steps can be tricky, especially since not all buying opportunities are similar.

Firms need to establish buying strategies that align with different opportunities. Whether you’re acquiring a complementary business to grow in your current market, or acquiring an expansion business to grow into a new market, you and your teams need to be able to identify which buying strategy your firm will pursue — and what data you’ll need to prepare for a successful acquisition.

DealCloud serves as a single source of truth that allows dealmakers to track geography, industry, size, source, known performance metrics, and public financial records for each opportunity. Within the pipeline dashboard, corporate development professionals can quickly view and compare potential targets for their acquisition opportunities, giving your entire firm informed visibility into the pipeline’s progression.

Above is an example of an active deal pipeline in DealCloud.

How do we stay aligned and competitive?

To keep strategies in line throughout the year, your firm must also keep an eye on what’s being sold in the market, who the key players are, and how these moves affect your plans for the year.

Through the year, any acquisition can shift the priority of your business. For example, one of our corporate development clients told us that their 2023 plans changed in the course of a single week after a particular deal was announced in the industrials space. Technology can help firms stay aware of, and better prepare for, game-changing events like these.

Having a single source of truth that supports all your firm’s needs makes it possible for your corporate development team to leverage and align with key information year-round. When you have access to market data, you can make better-informed decisions, stay competitive in your industry, and take your firm to the next level.

Above is an example of a filtered view in DealCloud that shows all opportunities within a specific business unit.

Managing and maintaining strong relationships is also crucial for success against your competition. DealCloud technology lets professionals determine how many deals have been sourced from intermediaries over time, and which strategies those deals aligned with. Similarly, teams can receive alerts about when to email or meet with contacts, ensuring their relationships don’t grow cold. Monitoring relationships and outreach strategies gives firms a competitive advantage in remaining relevant with their networks.

Above is an example of a graph showing how many deals have been sourced from intermediaries over time in DealCloud.

How do we get started?

Schedule a demo to see how DealCloud’s purpose-built corporate development platform can improve your firm’s corporate development strategies

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