The rise of virtual data rooms in the 21st century is truly remarkable, especially in the global M&A sector. Yes, online data room software has succeeded in becoming an integral part of different industries, including investment banking, real estate, IPOs, and fundraising.
Still, the M&A industry is surely the biggest consumer of virtual data rooms. Mergers and acquisitions are overwhelming for buyers as well as sellers because of multiple reasons such as voluminous paperwork, wait time, repeat requests, due diligence, etc. Not to mention, the process is time-consuming as well.
The reason why data room software is so crucial is that it can speed up deal making greatly, and the use of virtual data room for due diligence is another major reason why VDRs hold the key for M&As.
Today, we will highlight the importance of virtual data rooms in the modern M&A industry. but before that, let’s have a basic introduction of a data room.
What is a Virtual Data Room?
A virtual data room or simply a data room is an online cloud-based repository, particularly designed to store, share, exchange, and manage business data in a safe environment. Furthermore, online data room software is a highly secure virtual platform that serves as a proper workplace for businesses.
Why are Virtual Data Rooms Important for M&A Deals?
Basically, a virtual data room M&A does three important things:
- Streamlines the process
- Acts as a data repository where sellers can store and share data with buyers
- Provides a highly secure place for collaboration
Most importantly, virtual data rooms and their right selections are equally beneficial for buyers and sellers. Let’s discuss their benefits separately.
Benefits of Virtual Data Room for Buyers in M&A Deals
Any business in the world always looks for cost-cutting measures, and virtual data rooms help buyers to save money during M&A deals. For example, if the seller is still using a paper document system, the buyer would have to perform due diligence by physically verifying the corporate documents. If the buyer is located in the same city, the cost of traveling would be negligible.
However, if the buyer has to travel from another city, state, or country, then imagine the expenses that include travel, accommodation, and more.
Luckily, a virtual data room can simply reduce such expenses to zero. Buyers can access sellers’ corporate documents from any remote place through virtual data rooms.
2. Time Savings
Virtual data rooms are not only cost-effective for buyers, but they are a time-saving option too. Unlike physical data rooms (where corporate teams have to search, analyze, and verify every document), an online data room allows the buyers to search any specific file in seconds.
Apart from that, buyers prefer virtual data rooms for due diligence because VDRs generally stay open for document verification for 3 to 6 months. During this time, buyers can check documents to make more informed decisions.
3. Fair Playing Field
Virtual data rooms ensure fair play when it comes to M&A deals. In the case of PDR (physical data room), buyers will have to verify documents sequentially or turn-by-turn. That means the buyer who goes first will have more time to make a decision, while the teams who visit last will have minimal time.
Luckily, a virtual data room allows the sellers to add multiple buyers simultaneously and provide them with an equal opportunity to perform due diligence.
Advantages of Virtual Data Rooms in M&A Deals
1. Cost- and Time-Efficiency
Virtual data rooms are a cost-saving option for sellers in different ways. First of all, sellers won’t have to spend financial resources on printing all the corporate documents, thus saving paper, printing, and stationery costs. Moreover, sellers can save the physical storage cost by keeping the data in a virtual data room.
Similarly, virtual data rooms help sellers save a lot of their precious time. For instance, a seller may have to appoint a team to supervise the document inspection process. Moreover, the seller can make all necessary documents readily available to the buyers.
The seller can even set access restrictions to avoid data thefts. Also, virtual data rooms allow the sellers to add multiple buyers simultaneously to speed up the process and increase the chances of closing a deal.
2. Legal Compliance
The seller must make all the necessary corporate documents available to the buyer so that they can make better decisions. A virtual data room makes it easier for sellers to comply with legal requirements.
Generally, a high-quality virtual data room provider offers legally acceptable document presentation templates to make things easier for the seller. Also, the interaction between both parties, documents, and even the whole process can be recorded, stored, and used for legal purposes in the future.
3. Data Security
Sellers often feel reluctant to provide confidential corporate information to the buyers on insecure channels. That is why virtual data rooms are a top preference for sellers because they ensure maximum data security.
A seller can set different types of access restrictions on the buyers. The seller can set “view only” mode if it doesn’t want the buyer to download or print any particular document. Similarly, depending on the service provider, the seller can restrict buyers to take screenshots of the documents. Moreover, the seller can limit buyers’ access to specific documents or sections of corporate files.
Most importantly, the seller can monitor every single activity in the data room. This ultimately improves data security and brings more transparency.
Virtual data rooms are rapidly replacing the traditional channels in M&A transactions. They are secure, save time and money, bring more transparency, help the sellers to comply with legal requirements, and are easy to set up and maintain. In short, they are equally advantageous for sellers and buyers.