Your Corporate Development Strategy: Five Questions to Ask When Selecting an Investment Banking PartnerMost corporate executives fully understand the “strategic planning” process that projects the enterprise’s corporate objectives and initiatives over a five to seven year period. Many corporate management teams employ a strategic planning firm to facilitate the planning process which levels the playing field and results in the most objective and targeted strategic plan.

Corporate owners and investors, however, may not fully understand the investment banking business and may not have fully thought through and considered their numerous corporate development options.

This article examines five specific questions that you should consider when selecting an investment banking firm to help you guide your company’s corporate development plan and financial future:

  1. Does the investment banking firm you are considering offer strategic advisory services? These discussions normally revolve around the alternatives of your firm raising outside capital, completing acquisitions, sourcing debt capital, recapitalizing your firm, selling your firm, and/or other strategic alternatives.
  2. Does the firm have a proven transaction methodology for delivering results?
  3. Does the firm have experienced partners who will bring years of experience to your transaction? Will a senior partner of the investment banking firm directly work with you throughout the entire transaction process?
  4. Does the firm have a professional research department dedicated solely to the success of its corporate finance department?
  5. Does the firm you are considering specialize in the transaction size you are pursuing? Does the Investment Banking Firm You Are Considering Offer Strategic Advisory Services?


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Rick Rickertsen is the Managing Partner of Pine Creek Partners, a private equity firm based in Washington DC that offers capital and guidance for growing companies and the executives who currently or in the future will run them. Pine Creek was founded on the belief that entrepreneurs are unique leaders whose vision and energy is the core of a successful company. Through constructive and confidential partnerships with them, Pine Creek provides advice and capital for funding for business expansion, acquisition, or shareholder liquidity. Pine Creek focuses on companies with at least $5 million in revenues. Rick Rickertsen also is the author of two well known books, Buyout: The Insiders Guide to Buying Your Own Company and Sell Your Business Your Way: Getting Out, Getting Rich, and Getting on With Your Life. Learn more about Pine Creek Partners at