With the devastating human impact of Covid-19 and the associated slowdown of the global economy, it is inevitable that we will see an increase in business distress, liquidity issues and the need for new capital to be deployed quickly to shore up weakened balance sheets. In situations where existing shareholders are unable to or unwilling to provide additional liquidity, an accelerated sale of a business is often an option chosen to remedy the situation.

Whilst many shareholders and management teams will be experienced in M&A, the challenges and complexities of an accelerated sales process alongside  fire fighting the many issues being faced by a business in distress can be overwhelming. As stress levels rise and fear and uncertainty of the survival of the business set in, all too often it can lead to indecision at a time when speed is critical.

Whilst there is no silver bullet to guarantee success in such circumstances, by quickly assessing and analysing liquidity, identifying levers that can be pulled to reduce cash outflows, being bold and taking action, remaining flexible throughout the sales process and engaging with buyers and stakeholders early on, the chances of safeguarding the future of the business can be increased. See our views on key principals to maximising success in accelerated M&A.