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The Evolution of the Pitch Book Let’s face it: The M&A industry is mired in the dark ages of presentation — whether we examine the standard of pitch books firms produce or confidential information memoranda (CIMs) that are shown to prospective buyers. This isn’t merely an issue of poor aesthetics; the consequence is lost opportunity to source new deals during your prospect pitch, and the ability to leave a lasting impression when marketing your sell-side client’s company.

I had a conversation the other day with a respected mid-market M&A advisor who remarked, “Our firm is mulling the idea of transitioning our CIM format from Word to PowerPoint format. Do you see a trend that points toward such a shift?” While I’m personally fond of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s final line of the Great Gatsby, “…So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past”, I don’t want to see this as reality continuum for today’s M&A professional.

Let’s meditate on the said M&A advisor’s question. While our industry has fortunately evolved from cave paintings to Microsoft Office Suite for CIMs and pitch books, the practices of today underutilize modern technology and fail to address the changing tide in how humans interact with information.

What is the future? The next generation of CIMs and pitch books will be interactive, device responsive presentations, which live at a securely encrypted, HTTPS URL address. In other words, the presentation should appear differently depending on what type of device you are using, and anything marketed to target companies needs to have security controls in place. To that end, increased security and user administration functionality are imperative items to address amidst a growing climate of cyber-theft and unexpected variables.

It’s been discovered the we process images 60,000 times faster than we do text. Thus, addressing visual aspects, the modern CIM or pitch book will begin with a full-screen HD video, which should aim to engender an emotional reaction between the viewer and subject matter. Photos, infographics, and illustrations should be judiciously chosen, utilizing only HD vector files. All maps, charts, graphs, etc. should no longer remain static, they can be animated and interactive, allowing for increased audience engagement. A couple examples of the former — what if while hovering over shaded countries on a map referencing a company’s global footprint, a dialogue box would appear displaying pertinent macroeconomic data? Or, if graphs allowed the user to select or unselect items across the x-coordinates for different real-time looks?

At Valtari, we’ve been on a mission to revolutionize CIM and pitch book presentations. This month, Valtari was first to introduce to M&A and private equity firms the next generation of presentations. Our content writers, analysts, engineers, and designers have the ability to create a modern CIM or pitch book from scratch, or work with your existing content to develop a modern deliverable.

Our CIMs and pitch books are developed with the following features:



Functionality: 

  • Viewable on desktop, tablet, and mobile devices
  • Navigable table of contents available via sidebar 
  • Interactive & animated maps, graphs, and charts 
  • Client will receive analytics reporting of the CIM, i.e., who has viewed it, how many times, location, etc. 

Security and Confidentiality Protection Features: