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Toptal

Introduction: A Financial Model

Financial models are an indispensable part of every company’s finance toolkit. They are spreadsheets that detail the historical financial data of a given business, forecast its future financial performance, and assess its risks and returns profile. Financial models are typically structured around the three financial statements of accounting — namely: income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement. The management of most corporations rely, at least in part, on the details, assumptions, and outputs of financial models, all of which are critical to said companies’ strategic and capital decision-making processes.

This article serves as a step-by-step guide for the novice and intermediate finance professional looking to follow expert best-practices when building financial models. For the advanced financial modeler, this article will also showcase a selection of expert-level tips and hacks to optimize time, output, and modeling effectiveness. …


By Toptal Expert Vidur Gupta

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Toptal

From 15th Century Florence…

Family offices began investing in early-stage ventures centuries ago. In 15th century Florence, the Medici family actively supported young artists by investing in their works (venture capital of its day), patronage which provided the start for some of the greatest masters of all time from Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo to Galileo and Botticelli. Amazingly, this was 500 years before the first formal venture capital firm (ARDC) was founded.

…to Present Day

Fast forward to the present day. You are probably familiar with such household VC names as Sequoia, Andreessen Horowitz, Benchmark Capital, and Kleiner Perkins — firms that comprise the investor bases for ultra-successful startups such as Uber, Facebook, and WeWork. But make no mistake: Capital allocated by family offices also exists within these capital stacks, albeit quietly. One simply wouldn’t come across these secretive names unless one knew where to look. For example, in the upcoming IPO wave, there are unicorns such as Pluralsight that are backed by a multi-family office, ICONIQ, belonging to the Zuckerberg and Sandberg families, alongside mainstream venture capitalists like Insight Venture Partners. …


M&A ToolKit: Effective Structures For Breaking Purchase-Price Deadlocks and Mitigating Downside Risk.

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The Ugly Business of Negotiation Deadlocks

The process of buying and selling firms is, by nature, complex and lengthy. Whether the reason be as part of a growth-through-acquisition strategy or a founder seeking to raise capital via a part-divestiture, M&A can be distilled into two components: valuation and risk allocation. …

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