U.S. and International Private Equity Funds And Family Offices – Matching Networks To Needs

In Private Equity, leveraging a global network is critical in creating significant return on investment. Performance improvement, identification of high profile as well as off-market acquisition targets, and taking advantage of any other number of creative and strategic ways to increase the overall value of portfolio companies through business development and identification of other opportunities can differentiate a simple exit from a home run.

The Largest Funds and Family Offices Have A Built-In Network

For the largest U.S. and internationally based private equity funds and family offices, plugging into a robust and diverse global network of service providers and specialists and business opportunities that can improve a fund’s performance is often just a phone call or email away. The process of identifying acquisition targets and add-ons can be greatly simplified and expedited by leaning on your internal team’s vast network. But even with this large network, opportunities can be missed.

Smaller & International Funds and Family Offices – The Need For A Network

For funds that are middle market or smaller, especially those that are located outside of the U.S. seeking investment in the U.S., or US based funds or families seeking out international investors, a strong local or international network may not exist within your infrastructure. Layer on proximity, language, cultural, time and other differences, and your acquisition strategy and ability to perform can come up against multiple challenges.

The questions that a smaller or non-US fund or family office may ask itself are likely broader than those for a larger ones with infrastructure and even larger network in place. But a brief internal Q&A can help you identify the right people and organizations to leverage to get access to real opportunities:

  • What are our key operational issues in our existing portfolio companies and investments, and what types of experts might be able to help us improve?
  • What types of assets and companies are we looking to acquire and invest in, and how should we go about identifying them and connecting with them quickly and at a high level?
  • Do any strategic opportunities exist to generate or add value to our existing portfolio companies through strategic alliances, opening up new sales channels, global expansion.

Having a dedicated resource capable of helping your team putting a process in place to work through these questions, and to help you connect with the people and firms you need to build efficiencies, identify assets, and grow the business of your portfolio companies can create a tremendous savings in time, energy, resources and most importantly, drive value.

Working with a seasoned connector can go a long way.  By sharing your goals, hopes, and dreams for your fund or family, you can enable the right resource to seek out advisors, acquisitions targets, and business opportunities that can be a game changer for your portfolio companies. Supplementing your existing network can empower your team to identify and seek out the specific relationships you need to grow your business, or more importantly, expose you to opportunities that you are not even aware of.

Making Sense Of It All

Regardless of whether you are a large US based private equity fund, a smaller fund based in or outside of the US, or a family office, a lot can be gained by assessing your business needs, and then matching those needs with the capabilities of those across a broad network. Whether that network is your own, the network of an outside connector, or a combination of both… putting a process in place to identify opportunities in this way can give your team fresh insights and ideas into growing your business that may have been hiding in plain sight all along.