How Do I Choose the Best Mergers and Acquisitions Course?

Geri Terzo

Participating in mergers and acquisitions is a complex task that requires an ability to value companies and assets. Finding the best mergers and acquisitions course can be helpful for inexperienced professionals or students or even top corporate executives. Colleges and universities frequently offer the best choice of courses, while the Internet and local workshops also provide some direction.

Colleges and universities frequently offer the best merger and acquisition courses.
Colleges and universities frequently offer the best merger and acquisition courses.

To make sure that you select the best possible mergers and acquisitions course, obtain an outline or syllabus with details about the training objectives. Select a course that takes a comprehensive approach to teaching if you are new to the mergers and acquisitions arena. Details that might be helpful for a beginner's course are identifying who the market participants in mergers and acquisitions activity are, different buy and sell strategies, and the difference between buying a company that trades in the public equity markets versus a privately held entity.

Consider selecting a mergers and acquisitions course that provides different deal scenarios. In addition to strategic deals where one corporation buys another, private equity buyout deals are also common in the markets. It may be beneficial to learn when the market environment is ripe for private equity buyout firms to raise money for new portfolios from which to make acquisitions. Also, deals can be made with cash or with debt in a leveraged buyout transaction, and selecting a course that presents each opportunity will be useful.

Universities, particularly postgraduate business school programs, offer at least one mergers and acquisitions course. Business schools train students for careers in the financial markets, and merger deals are a key component keeping the capital markets healthy. There may be prerequisites to this type of mergers and acquisitions course, such as previous accounting credits. Also, because mergers and acquisitions are a function of investment banking, there may be a broader banking course to take that also covers merger transactions in the curriculum.

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The best mergers and acquisitions course may be available on the Internet. This option will likely be less expensive than attending a university course. Find out the type of live support that will be available to supplement the online learning experience in order to identify the best online training.

For the student who does not have the time to invest in a full-semester course, there are crash course programs available. These courses may unfold over the course of one week and are intense workshops that focus on different aspects of the mergers and acquisitions process. This type of preparation might be suitable for a corporate executive in need of expertise so that the most attractive transaction price is attained.

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