DiliVer : Transforming M&A Due Diligence

CIO VendorNeil Kleinberg, Founder and CEO
DiliVer is a venture-funded financial technology (FinTech) mergers and acquisitions (M&A) software company with specialized due diligence solutions that help yield better combined entity outcomes based on advanced analytics for enterprise performance and growth potential. The company’s software also provides additional M&A transaction life-cycle benefits, including a less painful and more accurate due diligence process, and, when combined with other M&A software packages, better deal sourcing, valuations, and post-merger integrations. DiliVer founder and CEO Neil Kleinberg says, “DiliVer’s mantra is ’science for the art of M&A’—we’re not trying to eliminate all of the artwork in the M&A community, just complement it with the best available industry-specific, data-driven technology.”

DiliVer’s new domain-verticalized, scorecard-powered applications reflect a new M&A deal paradigm that improves the quality and reduces the risk of M&A transactions for strategic/financial buyers (e.g., large corporations, private equity firms), all stages of sellers wishing to position themselves for future M&A transactions, and their intermediaries when forming new combined entities. DiliVer’s customers include companies or individuals that either perform M&A financial, legal, or operational (their sweet spot) due diligence services directly or require such services on an outsourced basis. As an analogy, think of DiliVer as the “CARFAX TM for M&A”—everything a buyer needs to know about a seller’s business (in contrast to a used car), including the hard-to-uncover operational information (under the hood), is expressed in one single enterprise-wide, metrics-based scorecard (as opposed to a Vehicle History Report) to simplify and influence the decision-making process of buying and growing the right company.

The historical lack of post-M&A transaction success for combined entities (i.e., “the outcome problem”) may be largely attributed to the widely-accepted but highly-inefficient M&A deal paradigm, which has a deal team/ transaction-focused mindset and which uses a general-purpose/process-driven software toolset to conduct the transaction.

DiliVer's mantra is Science for the Art of M&A

To combat this challenge, DiliVer promotes a new paradigm that introduces a combined entity/outcome-focused mindset and an industry-specific/data-driven software toolset that collectively enable an exit strategy through growth posturing and leveraging (what they call the new “P&L for M&A”).

On the buy-side, a DiliVer scorecard replaces the outdated and terribly inefficient “M&A due diligence checklist,” which is typically a very large, unstructured word processing or spreadsheet file that combines questions, documentation requests, and action items. For a common DiliVer engagement, the company moves the documentation requests to some secure repository (e.g., virtual data room); the action items to a workflow engine, and then converts the questions to single-purpose scorecard questions whose answers can be easily prioritized, measured, analyzed, and reported.

A common checklist question goes something like this:“How do you describe your company culture and values?” DiliVer would first create under its Human Resources scorecard category a Culture & Values sub-category, and then convert that open-ended question into a series of specific questions, such as “Does your company provide maternity leave of X weeks for new parents?” The answers to these questions would be given in metric format in accordance with key performance indicator (KPI) guidelines, and their software would generate a score that reflected the relative weighted priority of the Culture & Values sub-category. This system allows executives to make metrics-based deal decisions without having to read through extensive prose reports. Kleinberg says “Recent M&A community innovations have been driven largely by new FinTech software products, not new services or underlying processes. Enlightened M&A transaction practitioners would be wise to consider adopting their secretive and artsy legacy best practices to best leverage these new purpose-built FinTech M&A software tools.” To summarize, Kleinberg’s favorite DiliVer complement came from an international technology development company’s CFO—“We believe that these software tools will not only save DiliVer’s clients money, but they will also help make them money.”