When looking for an investment, or perhaps being involved in a merger or acquisition of some sort, it’s important to know not only the tools involved, but the terms as well. Throughout the course of the process, there will be expressions bandied about, such as deal room, letter of intent (LOI), covenants and others. One of the most common (and ultimately, important) things you should know about is the pitch deck.

What Is a Pitch Deck?

A pitch deck is a document that is commonly used in mergers and acquistions (M&As) transactions. It is a sales document, typically drafted by the investor (usually an investment bank), and it outlines the main attributes of the firm. This document is then used by the company’s sales force to sell its products and/or services. The term “pitch deck” comes from two slang terms — “pitch” is industry jargon for sales, while “deck” comes from the early days of personal computing, where a PowerPoint document was referred to as a “slide deck,” which actually has its origin in overhead slide projectors.

The purpose of a pitch deck is to give potential investors a window inside your business, with the goal of informing them of how things operate within. It tells the main points about your firm — products, services and an overview of your business plan, but it’s not a deep dive into all areas of the company. In short, a pitch deck is not the end-all, be-all document when your firm is looking for an investment or is aiming to be acquired — it’s simply one cog in the big process, as there is much more work ahead of you if you proceed with the funding and/or M&A.

What a Pitch Deck Should Include

You may be asking yourself “How should I create a pitch deck?” First rule — a pitch deck for any company should be kept short and sweet — it doesn’t have to venture into the minutiae of your company, products, and services — it merely has to give a quick overview into who you are, what you do, where you fit in and where you plan on going. Any pitch deck should include the following information.

  • Introduction: Who you are and why you are here
  • Your team: Leaders and team members — who they are and what they do
  • Problem: States exactly what problem your product and/or service solves
  • Solution: Explains the solution to the problems outlined in the previous section
  • Business model: How your company makes money and prospers
  • What differentiates you: What makes your company, products and/or services different from others in the same space
  • Products and services offered: What you offer and how it helps your customers
  • Market: TYour target market, its size and its demographics
  • Competition: Who else is doing what you’re doing (or attempting to); and what makes your offerings more attractive to your target audience
  • Investing: Current budgets as well as what size investment you’re looking for
  • Contact information: All your contact details — how people can reach you quickly

Things To Consider

The most important thing to remember is that a pitch deck should be an accurate representation of your company. Keeping the slide template consistent and using your company’s proper logo, font and colors is important. It should tell a story, but not get bogged down with minor details that aren’t important in the big picture. Remember, your pitch deck is an overview of your company, not a document including every detail about it. Using bullet points on the slides is better than inundating the reader with text.

How Can CapLinked Help This Process?

Any investment, M&A or other transaction that involves a pitch deck absolutely requires a secure, online location where the companies involved can store and share (with the appropriate credentials) the required documentation. This online location, commonly known as a virtual data room (VDR), contains the tools and features necessary for a successful transaction. These tools include high-level admin controls, document and version management, multiple layers of security and customer support available 24/7. The user-friendly interface and the ability to update and edit files from virtually anywhere around the globe helps the most time-intensive part of an M&A proceed more quickly.

CapLinked, an industry leader in the VDR space, can help streamline and save time and effort when it comes to mergers and acquisitions of all types. To learn about CapLinked’s advanced management features, document collaboration controls, customizable permissions and more, contact CapLinked today to start your free trial.

Chris Capelle is a technology expert, writer and instructor. For over 25 years, he has worked in the publishing, advertising and consumer products industries.

Sources

MasterClass – Guide to Pitch Decks: 10 Elements to Include in a Pitch Deck

Investopedia – Pitchbook

Improve Presentation – What Is a Pitch Deck? 

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