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ISSUE LIST: WE WANT YOUR OPINION
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Here is a list of issues and discussion topics related to mergers and acquisitions, and private equity investing. I am always looking for guest writers, links, reports, white papers, and other content related to these issues. Even better would be insights on major deals in the defense industry, in addition to feedback on what issues you are dealing with that could be added to this list.  Contact me to submit information.

  • One of the biggest PE buyouts last year was Carlyle taking over Booz-Allen's Government consulting practice. DC Capital bought out Spectrum Group and then set up NASI. Cerberus bought & propped up ill-fated IAP. Veritas bought DynCorp and then McNeil. All the big defense firms have been setting up Defense & Govt Services divisions over the past few years. Is the Government Services sector going to consolidate like the manufacturers did in the 1990's?
  • Is defense industry M&A insulated from the current financial crisis? How does the crisis affect the position of 3rd party private equity investors (Carlyle, Veritas, etc) as compared to the major defense firms? That is, will scarcity of capital hurt the PE investors more/less/same than corporate acquirers?
  • Are Defense & Homeland Security PE firms truly differentiated from consolidated PE firms? For example, does Veritas have any advantage over Cerberus or Blackstone?
  • In 2007 nearly half of worldwide aerospace & defense M&A was transatlantic. How important are international markets for a defense related PE portfolio? If you work for a PE firm or M&A advisor, are you or your client(s) sourcing overseas deals?
  • What about Europe? That is, how significant are the development of the European Defense Agency and the European Commission's policies promoting European-wide defense markets and European defense industry integration/cooperation?
  • What does it mean, if anything, that major European defense firms are making acquisitions (EADS, Finmeccanica) in the U.S.? Is this a major shift or statistically insignificant result of globalization?
  • Aerospace & Defense contractors historically have relatively low industry costs of capital. Is that reflected in the discount rates used to value companies in this sector? Is there anything unique about due diligence in the defense sector?
  • As a PE investor or M&A advisor, how would you rate the overall effectiveness of post-merger integration in the defense industry? To the extent that post merger integration could be improved, would you say the challenges relate to differences in corporate culture between the acquirer and the acquired, or are the issues more technical in nature (OCI, security clearance, etc)?
  • What are the major trends for defense industry investing and M&A in emerging markets? Are there opportunities in India, Russia, Brazil? Others? Or are these more risk than return?