In an industry such as mergers and acquisitions (M&A) that does not require a license in 39 of 50 states, how does a business owner know they are in good hands?
Fortunately, there is an answer to this. The certifications and education of your broker can serve as a testament to their dedication to learning their craft and perfecting it. The primary certifications an advisor can get are the CBI and M&AMI.
The M&AMI is not a quick and easy certification to get. It requires time and effort, as well as a fundamental understanding of M&A.
At MidStreet, we hold both a CBI and M&AMI so we can best serve our lower middle market clients when selling their company.
To give you a better grasp of the value M&AMI certified advisors provide you, we will provide an overview of what the M&AMI certification is, the requirements, the education required, and how it sets M&A advisors apart.
Let’s get started.
Description of The M&AMI Certification
The Merger & Acquisition Master Intermediary (M&AMI) certification has similar and additional requirements to the CBI certification. They are both certifications by which merger and acquisition (M&A) advisors can show their dedication to improving their knowledge of the field.
The key distinction is, the M&AMI is designed to help business intermediaries gain skills and knowledge to assist lower level middle market and standard middle-market clients sell their companies.
What Are The Requirements to Get an M&AMI?
Becoming an M&AMI is a long process and requires brokers to be a member of M&A Source, submit an application, and pay a fee, in addition to meeting the following requirements:
- Have 3 years of documented M&A transaction experience in the past 10 years
- Have a CBI certification and take additional courses from M&A source
- Have attended two M&A Source conferences
- Complete and submit three deals with sale prices over $1.5 million
If a broker already has their CBI, they will generally only need to take 20 additional credit hours in courses. If the intermediary does not have their CBI, they will have to take 40 additional credit hours.
The Education Required to Maintain an M&AMI
To maintain their M&AMI certification, intermediaries must do the following:
- Be an active member of M&A Source or IBBA
- Attend a minimum of one M&A Source conference
- Earn at least 36 credit hours through education or business transactions
These are the main requirements that M&A advisors need to obtain in order to stay certified as an M&AMI. Find out more about the requirements for the M&AMI certification.
Why Hire an M&AMI Certified Advisor?
M&AMI professionals must become recertified every three years to remain certified as an M&AMI, which means that they must stay up to date on all of the changes happening within the M&A industry.
They will be aware of trends and best practices when it comes to facilitating business transactions. Unlike intermediaries without the designation, they will be the most informed professionals in their space, providing you with the highest quality of advisement.
Just like the CBI, the M&AMI certification also requires certification holders to uphold a code of ethics. The code of ethics is set by M&A Source and requires advisors to:
- Follow laws in accordance with their jurisdiction while practicing M&A
- Remain up to date on changing trends within the industry
- Must not misrepresent facts within a business transaction
- Protect their client and all parties involved against any fraud
- Advise their clients to use qualified professional advisors for services they can’t provide
- Have a separate bank account to hold trusts or escrow funds
- Obtain written agreements for listings, business deals, and agency relationship
- Must perform work in accordance with the interests of their clients
- Must inform any clients of dual agency or potential conflict of interest
There are 18 total articles within M&A Source’s code of ethics. Learn about the rest of the M&A Source code of ethics here.
Sell Your Business With an M&AMI Certified Advisor
Now that you know what is required of an M&A advisor to get their M&AMI, you know that it is not a simple process and it shows dedication to their craft. When an advisor has this designation, they will be better able to serve you in the sale of your business.
In addition to vetting intermediaries by their designation, you will need to vet them based on their process and the size of businesses they generally sell. Learn more about how to vet brokers by reading “5 Tips to Find the Best Business Broker.”
Do you want to know how to find the best intermediary to sell your business? Give us a call today to learn more about what to look for.