PEM Corporate Finance LLP

We are a leading independent corporate finance specialist based in Cambridge. We work closely with business owners on company disposal, acquisition, management buyout, succession, raising debt and equity finance, business valuation and corporate strategy

We are a flat structured team so our senior staff support clients at every stage. We take the time to listen and develop a deep understanding of each client’s business and needs. Our success based fees are a reminder to clients that we have their best interests at heart; and many continue to use us for advice after the deal has completed. With over 70 years' combined experience delivering transactions, we have a track record of helping clients prosper.

Access to specialist tax advice

We are the corporate finance arm of PEM, the largest independent firm of Accountants, Tax and Business Advisers based in Cambridge. We are based in PEM's central Cambridge office. This guarantees us immediate access to the firm's specialists, who give valuable input on the tax aspects of deals.

We like to talk

Please get in touch if you would like to have an informal chat about your business plans or requirements. We treat every call as confidential. There are no obligations attached to getting in touch with us, and we will be honest and helpful about your options going forwards.

Products and services

Financial Due Diligence

PEMCF is able to carry out independent and bespoke FDD that will help to provide clarity to your decision making.

Financial due diligence (or FDD) can be carried out on a prospective acquisition, buyer or partner.

FDD helps to tackle issues early by revealing information:

  • that could be used to negotiate the price
  • which may have a bearing on your final investment decision
  • which may aid the tax and financing structure
  • upon which transaction terms may be based
  • for which protection in the form of warranties or indemnities may be required

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Business Valuation

Our team has considerable experience valuing businesses of various sizes and complexities; from sole traders to multinationals, and window cleaners to airlines.

Reasons you may need a business valuation:

  • Corporate governance
  • Tax and Accounting
  • Regulatory reasons
  • Shareholder exist
  • Business planning
  • Shareholder disputes
  • Matrimonial disputes
  • Restructuring

Our multidisciplinary approach helps us develop a deep understanding of what makes your business valuable. We look at the whole picture to deliver a report that is commercial and robust.

Our approach

Our multidisciplinary approach helps us develop a deep understanding of what makes your business valuable. We look at the whole picture to deliver a report that is commercial and robust.

We do not use software driven or form filling processes but tailor our service to each client’s needs. We offer long and short form business valuation reports, and we can give input on deal price expectations.

To learn more about our approach and values please visit the About Us page.

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Raising Finance

We work closely with owner-managers to critically assess their long term plans for the business and funding requirements to determine the most suitable forms of debt or equity finance.

We advise businesses on raising private equity finance for:

  • growth capital
  • development capital
  • management buyouts
  • share sales

We also help source debt finance from banks and other providers for:

  • refinancing
  • M&A

We introduce clients to key contacts in corporate banking or private equity, and we have a track record of helping businesses present themselves in the best light to raise finance on good terms. Typically we identify the most active players in a targeted market from our network of venture capitalists, business angels, banks and private equity houses.

For examples of our work on raising finance see the Deals page.

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Succession Planning

We work with clients to develop succession plans that help them:

  • identify a successor
  • enable the successor to buy the business
  • manage the transfer of responsibility
  • exit the business tax efficiently
  • secure a successful future for the business

Our team has considerable experience in management buyout (MBO) and company restructuring, and we enjoy immediate access to PEM’s business tax and share scheme experts. This enables us to find the best options for your succession.

Our approach

Our team takes time to listen and develop a deep understanding of your business. We look at the long term and explore your options rigorously. In this way, our team delivers succession plans that are robust, practical and suited to your individual needs.

To learn more about our approach and values please visit the About Us page.

Please get in touch if you would like to have an informal discussion about your business plans or requirements.

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Management buyout (MBO)

MBO has become a popular form of exit for many owner-managers and large corporate entities over the years. We have helped to deliver many management buyouts, all of which had their own complexities.

A management buyout (MBO) lets the management team of a business acquire it from its owners with the help of financial backers. It provides managers with a once in a lifetime opportunity to own their own business and enjoy financial rewards that exceed those of a salaried individual. A management buyin (MBI) is similar but some or all of the management team is external to the company.

The key factors to making any MBO/MBI work are:

  • a well rounded and ambitious management team
  • the ability to leverage the business
  • a willing vendor with realistic price expectations

MBO has become a popular form of exit for many owner-managers and large corporate entities over the years. We have helped to deliver many management buyouts, all of which had their own complexities.

Succession buyouts

We specialise in helping business owners to achieve succession by selling to their management team. This type of transaction is sometimes called a VIMBO (vendor initiated management buyout) or FAMBO (family buyout). We call it a succession buyout as this best summarises its benefits.  

To deliver a succession buyout we typically work with the business owner to structure a deal that is fundable, gets them good value for their business, and is a good opportunity for their management team. The tax aspects are complicated, but we work closely with PEM's tax specialists to ensure tax efficiency.

We believe a succession buyout revolves around the people involved. It is about making the deal work for all parties and managing the communication between the current owner and the new team.

We also help with the traditional form of MBO, which occurs when a corporate group disposes of a non-core businesses by selling it to the management team.

MBO Process

This can be time consuming and stressful. As advisers we guide and help you through each stage of the process. These include:

  • Feasibility assessment
  • Writing a business plan
  • Management presentations to potential financiers and selecting the best offer
  • Vendor negotiations
  • Legal documentation
  • Project management to completion

We help you create a business plan that is attractive to the banking and venture capital market, and we introduce you to our key financier contacts. We often work with management teams to:

  • build bespoke financial models
  • provide an indicative valuation on the business
  • advise on structuring
  • represent them in negotiations with the vendor and financiers

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Selling a business

We specialise in selling unquoted owner-managed businesses. We help our clients maximise the price of their business and negotiate favourable deal terms.

The disposal process

We begin the disposal process by developing a deep understanding of your business and what makes it valuable. We then evaluate and agree price expectations using our extensive internal research capabilities and our network of international contacts through Kreston Global.

We subscribe to a range of M&A databases, which we will use to identify a short-list of compatible potential buyers. These buyers are contacted, though information is only shared after rigorous confidentiality undertakings are signed.

We then conduct a private auction of your business with interested parties to achieve the best possible price and terms. From there we project manage the disposal through to completion.

The disposal process can take between six to twelve months. Our practical, hands-on team ensures we take care of the process, enabling you to concentrate on running your business as usual.

Single buyer option

This may be more appropriate for your business if you would like to negotiate with just one buyer who has already approached you. We can help with this, ensuring that you get the best deal by benchmarking the price and negotiating with the purchaser.

What makes us distinctive?

Our approach to business disposal is distinctive and very different to that of company brokers. We:

  • spend time understanding your business so that our selling documentation is properly prepared and our team has an excellent working knowledge of the company.  
  • ensure all the buyers we contact are properly researched, prequalified (credible and can afford to consider a transaction) and signed up to a confidentiality agreement before they know it is your business for sale. We don’t believe in a scatter gun approach as this is potentially damaging.
  • contact your buyers personally; we do not use a call centre. Because we understand your business, we can have sensible conversations with senior directors at target buyers.
  • support and attend all meetings with prospective buyers. We help you assess the strengths and weaknesses of any offers.
  • personally negotiate the best deal for you.
  • remain involved in the deal after Heads of Terms have been signed to manage and control the due diligence and legal processes. This is the stage where many deals fall through so it is essential your business is protected and the deal is managed properly.

Some of the businesses that we have supported through the disposal process can be found on our Deals page.

Business valuation 

Business valuation is integral part of the business disposal process, although we undertake valuations for a range of other purposes. You can find out more about our approach and process on our Business Valuation page. Alternatively, please get in touch for an informal discussion about your requirements.

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Buying a business

We help businesses looking to grow through acquisition. We work closely with our clients from start to finish, developing a deep understanding of your business and acquisition criteria. We are experienced at identifying suitable acquisition targets using our extensive in-house research facilities.

We help with contacts potential targets, and will have meaningful, yet confidential, discussions with vendors to assess their appetite for a deal. We then help to negotiate attractive deal price and terms.

We also help to raise finance for the acquisition. To facilitate this we help write a fundraising document and work with you to prepare required financial projections. We are able to introduce and negotiate with financial backers to get the right amount of finance on the best overall terms. We project manage due diligence, legal and tax work through to completion.

Please see our Deals page for details of acquisitions we have worked on, or get in touch for an informal discussion about your business plans or requirements.

Our team is experienced at conducting financial due diligence both for corporate acquirers and the leading commercial banks if needed.

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