Private equity is a heavily-regulated sector with many rules, regulations, and laws to follow. These established practices allow for an acceptable return on investment and ongoing efforts to drive profits. However, due to the growing greediness of modern-day private equity giants, these rules are sometimes ignored or even changed by these corporate entities to obtain greater returns for their shareholders. The following are mistakes made by modern-day private equity giants.
Lack of Innovation & Experimentation
Innovation is a key to distinguishing oneself from legacy firms. Even as early adopters in technology-driven healthcare, retail, and hospitality, private equity players have fallen behind in innovation. This is, in large part, because of the inherent conservatism inherent in private equity firms. Investors and veterans like Peter Comisar are risk-averse and have little appetite for investing in unproven businesses. If you do not innovate, you could end up being just another boring old firm that no one pays much attention to in a world of disruption.
Failure to Build Industry Networks
Private equity firms missed the boat, building strong and lasting industry networks by investing in tech giants later acquired by other players. Building good industry networks are about more than just finding a great deal. It is about building strong and lasting relationships with peers, suppliers, and customers. Even if you pay less for the company you are acquiring, you might end up paying more in diligence costs and time due to lack of access to data, due diligence, and poor relationships with key industry players.
Failure to Set Clear Financial Goals
Private equity firms should set clear financial goals for their portfolio companies. When this is not done, it can be very challenging to determine whether the portfolio company is performing well or not by comparing the results against these goals. If the firm fails to do so, it could be much more difficult to build value in the future. To effectively build value in the portfolio, private equity firms need to figure out how to create value in their investments. This includes making reasonable projections about the future performance of the portfolio companies and how this will affect overall business growth in the future.
Failure to Identify New Deals
One of the most important aspects of private equity is identifying new deals. If a private equity firm puts all of its eggs in one basket, it could end up with no business to manage if things don’t work out for that particular deal. A good track record can be a double-edged sword if one fails to predict future market trends correctly. If firms accurately identify new sales, but they turn out to be bad investments, it can hurt their reputation and track record. In addition, the lack of new deals makes it more challenging for firms to generate returns in the future because they are much fewer chances of finding undervalued companies.
Since the industrial revolution, many different economic models have attempted to answer societal needs. Among these models has been the private equity fund, which has grown in popularity over just a few decades. With the recent economic downturn and an increasing number of investors becoming risk-averse, private equity firms are seeing their best response to date.