Dealmaking in the age of Covid-19

Published: November 24, 2020

With remote working now the norm, deal-making has had to step away from face-to-face meetings and investor roadshows. What are the challenges and opportunities of virtual deal-making? 

eal-making is, traditionally speaking, a highly interactive pursuit. Reliant on roadshows, investor meetings and face-to-face negotiations, it is first and foremost about relationship building. This time last year, it would have been hard to imagine a capital raise that occurred entirely virtually, or an M&A deal in which the two parties never meet. 

Covid-19, however, has upended the status quo. This year, with social distancing rules and travel bans in place, dealmaking has gone virtual. Dealmakers are predominantly working from home, and many aspects of the process have moved online. 

“We are hearing consistently that pre-deal work has easily shifted to the virtual environment,” Matthew Hardcastle, DealCloud’s EMEA client development director, tells EMEA Finance. “Connecting with counterparties and early motions are easy to do over a virtual meeting and in many ways easier than trying to complete in person. This balance shifts once you move to the late stage of a transaction where it is hard to replace in-person negotiations to get deals over the line.”

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