Traditionally, executive leadership at PE-backed companies has taken a backseat in deal origination. However, private equity firms are increasingly adopting more hands-on engagement models and are looking for leaders with an ownership mentality. So, while PE firms typically employ sourcing teams and experts to manage the deal process, CXOs are now in a unique position to seek out potential acquisitions given that they are at the frontline of their industry.

Top-performing executives should be familiar with both their market positioning and value proposition. Executives can leverage this awareness to originate proprietary deals and be a powerful partner to their sponsor. In fact, the best management teams complement the efforts of their sponsors by originating their own targets.

The CXO’s Guide to Deal Origination

CEOs are generally responsible for acquisition efforts and acquisition-related decisions. In fact, dealmaking is the second-most likely strategic initiative CEOs undertake to promote growth, according to McKinsey. During origination and outreach, they paint the vision of the prospective company and illustrate the advantages and strategic benefits of selling.

“Good CEOs and presidents should be in the market constantly, talking to analysts, partners, customers and competitors. They should be building relationships, testing strategy and earning credibility with an eye towards future strategic moves.” 

— Josh Bouk, current PE-bac...