As of September 1, 2021, we are pleased to be part of D.A. Davidson & Co. We will continue serving our clients as part of their full-service Investment Banking Group. Click here to learn more about our combined strengths.


For nearly 20 years, Marlin & Associates has provided expert and trusted strategic and financial advice to buyers, sellers, investors, owners, and managers of U.S. and international companies that provide vertical application software, services financial technology, data and analytics – including firms that offer WealthTech, Payments Tech, InsurTech, BankTech, Real Estate Tech, LegalTech, GRC, Business Intelligence, Market Intelligence, Capital Markets Technology, and Digital Tech including Workflow Automation. Our professionals have advised on more than 200 successfully completed transactions with participants in 27 countries. 

As of September 1, 2021 we are pleased to be part of D.A. Davidson & Co., the employee-owned, full service financial services firm that provides wealth management, investment banking, equity and fixed income capital markets. (D.A. Davidson was founded in 1935, and has 1,400 employees, 99 offices in 28 states).  Click here to learn more about our combined strength. 

D.A. Davidson’s investment bank does m&a and a lot more – offering comprehensive debt and equity capital markets expertise and the full range of m&a advice for clients worldwide looking to buy, sell or raise capital for firms in consumer, diversified industrials, financial institutions, and technology industries…and that’s where we fit in. (This group has been part of more than 40 technology firm public offerings completed since 2019, including the IPOs of Airbnb, Snowflake, UiPath, Telos, Duck Creek Technologies, and Coursera).


You can read more about the transaction HERE.

Transaction Advice for Mergers, Acquisitions, Joint Ventures and Divestitures

Marlin & Associates (“M&A”) offers comprehensive financial and strategic advisory services relating to mergers and acquisitions; purchases and sales of publicly and privately owned businesses; divestitures of corporate subsidiaries, assets and divisions; private placements; and the formation of joint ventures, strategic alliances and other business combinations.

M&A's professionals have experience in helping clients to identify transactional opportunities, locate potential buyers and sellers, and help the parties forge mutual agreement at the negotiating table. We have no authority to and we do not independently negotiate, accept or reject the price or any other terms or conditions pertaining to any potential transaction between our clients and any third-party. We help our clients understand their alternatives, develop negotiating strategies and we recommend approaches, providing assistance in initiating, structuring, valuing, financing, and implementing.

The M&A team's extensive transaction history, industry relationships, and research capabilities ensure that before a transaction, our clients are well informed about valuation, potential interested parties, the key stages in a transaction process, and the likely length of time to close a transaction. M&A seeks to help its clients achieve the best price, terms and strategic fit with the least disruption to the company.

Strategic Advisory

M&A’s professionals have a breadth of operational experience that provides clients with unique problem-solving perspective. We offer straightforward, realistic in-depth assessments, evaluate competitive positioning, uncover pitfalls and opportunities, identify synergies within and outside organizations, and evaluate build-versus-buy options. We help our clients to identify, understand, prioritize, and act on business strategic and financial issues most vital to their long-term success.

M&A’s strategic consulting assignments typically involve the business and financial issues most critical to the long-term competitiveness of the clients. Upon request, M&A will work with the client to determine the best way to effect increases in shareholder value, including assistance in Portfolio Optimization, Corporate Restructuring, implementation of efficiency enhancement programs; structuring strategic alliances; assistance in integration of acquired or merged businesses; implementation and realization of co-operation deals; and Marketing and Strategic Planning in anticipation of transactions.

Corporate Finance Advisory|Capital Raising

Middle market companies have the same financial and strategic imperatives as larger companies and often are faced with additional challenges due to size. They may need to raise capital to fund internal growth or to finance acquisitions. They may want to achieve liquidity for shareholders or bring in equity to reduce debt.

Our professionals have extensive experience helping clients to raise capital in virtually any market condition. We draw on that experience to assist our clients with the unique challenges of selling equity, as well as senior debt and subordinated / mezzanine debt. We have an extensive network of banks, hedge funds, private equity, venture capital, mezzanine, strategic and other institutional financing institutions and investors with demonstrated interest in the sectors we serve. We help our clients identify the most suitable financing and then work with them to structure, negotiate and bring the transaction to a successful close.

Financial Opinion Services

M&A performs business valuations and issues opinions confirming the fairness of a particular transaction from a financial point of view, for both publicly traded and privately held firms. Our services include analyzing and explaining the potential impact of alternative valuation techniques and transaction structures. Building on the experience of M&A executives in valuing businesses in the Digital Information Economy. M&A uses several valuation techniques to build a possible range of valuations. By providing commentary on the methodology and suitability of each valuation technique, M&A can give its clients a clear idea of the range of value of their business.

Fairness Opinions

A fairness opinion is a financial advisor's determination that the terms in a merger, acquisition, divestiture, leveraged buyout, restructuring, securities issuance or other transaction are fair from a financial point of view. A fairness opinion may be rendered on behalf of a company, its shareholders or a limited group of shareholders (i.e. public shareholders or non-controlling shareholders). Such a Fairness Opinion is evidence that fiduciary responsibilities have been discharged in good faith and with requisite expertise.

M&A assists boards of directors, investors, trustees and other corporate and organizational leaders, and governmental agencies, in fulfilling their fiduciary responsibilities by providing them with unbiased opinions about the financial fairness of pending transactions.

A comprehensive analysis, including thorough assessments of the proposed transaction as well as alternatives, allows clients to make informed decisions in the interests of their constituencies. A timely independent analysis may establish for the record that fiduciaries have adequately considered the proposed transaction and the potential alternatives, and have properly exercised their business judgment.

M&A's know-how in valuing companies and their underlying securities- including common stock, convertible and preferred securities, warrants, options, various debt instruments, and partnership and limited liability company interests, in addition to our transactional experience, enable M&A to provide our clients with the expertise required to assess complex situations encompassing virtually every type of change of control transaction, including affiliate and insider transactions, concurrent mergers and tender offers, spin-offs, synergistic mergers, as well as transactions with competing offers.

The firm is also expert at valuations involving complex assets and liabilities, and assessing intangible assets such as databases, software and libraries; contracts and franchises; copyrights; patents; licensing agreements; and marketing and distribution agreements. M&A is adept at situations that involve challenging and unusual circumstances.

Goodwill Impairment

In 2001, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued a series of new rules regarding accounting for business combinations and intangible assets. including SFAS rules 141, 142 and 144. Among other things, the new rules prohibit the pooling of interests method of accounting and eliminate goodwill amortization.

Under the new rules, goodwill will remain on the balance sheet but must be tested at least annually for impairment in a two-step process. Companies must allocate intangibles and goodwill to each reporting unit for impairment testing. Goodwill impairment is the difference between the fair value and carrying value.

The first step (Step 1) of a company's impairment test requires a determination of the fair value of each reporting unit and then a comparison of that fair value to the carrying value of the assets of the reporting unit. If the carrying value exceeds fair value, the reporting unit fails the Step 1 test and must conduct a second test (Step 2). Step 2 requires the valuation of all intangibles, including the implied value of goodwill. Goodwill impairment will be charged to operating earnings.

While many financial officers welcome the end of goodwill amortization, the downside is that new rules will require more time from management in testing and managing goodwill and intangibles.

Valuation Opinions

Companies require independent assessments of their worth for a variety of reasons: to go public; merge with a partner; acquire a business; redeem shareholders' interests; determine tax liabilities; assess collateral values; configure buy/sell equity incentives; structure ESOPs; and reorganize family-owned businesses.

When companies undergo leveraged transactions, they are routinely scrutinized by stockholders, lenders, regulators, and the Internal Revenue Service. A solvency analysis by an independent expert allows the company to evaluate its financial status following the close of a proposed transaction. It may also help protect the company or its secured lenders, directors, and advisors from potential liability relating to fraudulent conveyance claims.

Professionals at M&A combine a powerful assortment of analytical tools with real-world experience to objectively determine corporate worth in today's demanding marketplace.

The Process

Fundamental to all M&A's work is the M&A commitment to gaining a thorough understanding of a client's business, and ensuring that before a transaction, clients are well informed about valuation, potential interested parties, the key stages in a transaction process, and the likely length of time to close a transaction. The process typically involves several phases, including the following:

  • Reviewing carefully the Company's business and strategic plans, budgets, financial results and expectations.
  • Researching public information with respect to the current state of the market, including recent transactions relevant to the Transaction.
  • Preparing a high-quality memorandum that accurately describes the business, its performance, and compelling investment merits.
  • Generating a comprehensive database of potential acquirers, or investors including strategic and financial buyers, screened to fit the criteria of the seller.
  • Working with the Company to create a confidential competitive process designed to generate a range of favorable offers for the client to consider.
  • Coordinating due diligence reviews.
  • Assisting in developing and executing the form and structure of the Transaction.
  • Transforming the best offer into a completed transaction.

Marlin & Associates draws upon its financial skills, negotiating experience and significant contacts to secure the best result possible for our clients.


Marlin & Associates is very sensitive to the needs of its clients to protect sensitive information. In addition to our own strict measures to ensure such confidentiality, it is our practice to restrict the amount of information provided to prospective buyers, sellers and investors in the early stages of a potential transaction, and even for this limited information to have such interested parties sign an appropriate Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) before they receive any sensitive on the business information from M&A. More detailed information is provided (under NDA) only to those parties approved by the client.

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