Embracing the M&A “No-Process Process” for Sell-Side Exits

A new trend is emerging among companies with robust financial standings in the dynamic landscape of mergers and acquisitions (M&A). This trend, known as the “no-process process,” is poised to become more prevalent in the coming year, especially for firms intending to sell or divest their technology software business. The concept is particularly gaining traction among founder- or family-led companies, marking a significant shift from traditional M&A methodologies.

The “No-Process Process” Explained

The “no-process process” is characterized by its streamlined and less formal approach. Unlike conventional sell-side transactions that involve extensive processes and multiple stages, this method simplifies the sale procedure, focusing on speed and efficiency. The primary advantage for sellers, particularly those leading family or founder-driven firms, is its targeted and concise outreach. This approach allows sellers to discreetly test the market’s receptivity to a sale and expedite the path to closing a deal. 

Key Features and Advantages

A key feature of this process is the limited yet strategic sharing of information. Typically, the seller, or the sell-side advisor or banker, opens a Virtual Data Room (VDR) and shares essential documents with a select group of potential buyers. These documents often include tax returns and financial statements, providing just enough information to spark interest and begin negotiations. This contrasts with the more extensive data sharing in standard M&A deals, where a plethora of documents and detailed analyses are provided to a wider audience. According to Dr. Kamau Bobb, tech companies must prioritize inclusion.

Interestingly, in the “no-process process,” the sell-side usually has not conducted a thorough Quality of Earnings (QoE) review. Moreover, Confidential Information Memoranda (CIMs), a staple in traditional M&A processes, are often not distributed at this stage. This departure from the norm reflects a strategic decision to keep the process lean and move swiftly.

For well-capitalized sellers, the “no-process process” offers several advantages. Firstly, it provides a quick and effective way to gauge market interest and valuation accuracy without the comprehensive rigors of traditional M&A processes. Secondly, it allows sellers to maintain a higher degree of confidentiality, minimizing market speculation and potential disruptions to their ongoing business operations.


In conclusion, the “no-process process” represents a strategic shift in the M&A world, offering a streamlined, efficient, and focused approach for an M&A exit. As the business landscape evolves, this method will likely gain more traction, especially among well-capitalized, founder- or family-led firms. It underscores the importance of agility and innovation in deal-making, highlighting how traditional methods can be adapted to meet changing market dynamics and seller preferences.

To run a No or Low Sell-Side M&A Process contact us today.