Helen Darwin’s findings

Updated: Nov 16, 2020

The below is part three of a three part blog on how Vision Capital transformed its M&A processes. The story and characters in this three part blog are fictitious.


Subject: The better way

Penny, Ted, Alex,

I have been through all of the Fund IV deals and attach my report with detailed findings and recommendations. A summary of my key findings and recommendations are below.


Vision does not have a standardised process to close deals. Key deliverables at closing come in static documents - PDFs, excel, emails etc - that lose value quickly post the event. Onboarding new acquisitions is a time consuming and inefficient process. We lack a single source of truth across our portfolio holdings. Material events in the life of a portfolio - refinancings, add-on acquisitions, cap table changes - are difficult to track and manage. It is common for gaps to arise and accumulate - e.g. missing documents, missed deadlines, incorrect cap tables etc. The result is a time consuming exit process resulting in value leakage.


1. Standardise & automate our deal closing processes

Having studied all the Fund IV deals, it is clear to me that we can standardise & automate our deal closing processes through the use of technology.

Benefits: Ease of onboarding; ability conduct analysis across deals; creates a long term store of value.

2. Create a Single Source of Truth across our portfolio holdings

If we standardise & automate our deal closing processes, we can use the same platform to track and monitor the portfolio through the holding period.

Benefits: Decision makers are armed with the right information at the right time.

3. Implement an intelligent data management system

We should embed an intelligent data management system - that tracks and alerts when gaps arise - into this common platform.

Benefits: Identify and close gaps as they arise; produce data packs quickly for transactions.

I have consulted with our IT team and together, we have prepared a detailed technical specification for a system that can achieve the above. The details are in the report. Another benefit of implementing a system that achieves the above is that it can easily be scaled to achieve portfolio performance tracking and investor reporting in the next stage.

Happy to meet up and discuss my findings in detail.



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