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Advisors, Private Equity

PE Mad Libs: A Story of Due Diligence Gone Wrong

In honor of April Fools’ Day, we’ve decided to make a light-hearted Mad Libs for our readers. Think you have the best story? Leave it in the comments or send us the final version at editor@axial.net.

Never played Mad Libs before? First, fill in the slots in Step 1 without peeking at the story below. Then fill in your answers in Step 2. You’ll be surprised at the story you get!


Step 1: Complete the following list

  1. Type of tree: ______________________
  2. Adjective: ______________________
  3. Adjective: ______________________
  4. Industry: ______________________
  5. Location: ______________________
  6. Number: ______________________
  7. Noun: ______________________
  1. Animal: ______________________
  2. Male Relative: ______________________
  3. First Name: ______________________
  4. Female Relative: ______________________
  5. Profession: ______________________
  6. Type of vehicle: ______________________
  7. City: ______________________

Step 2: Fill the above words with corresponding numbers

John Smith, a Managing Director at (1. _________) Capital, was very excited about the potential investment in (2._________) Strategy Corp. He had received the teaser through his proprietary (3._________) dealflow strategy,  and the company perfectly fit the key criteria: a (4._________) business located in (5._________) with a revenue of (6._________) million.

However, things took a turn for the worse when Mr. Smith began his due diligence. Not only had the company misfiled the patent for its signature (7. _________) printing technique, it had also been ignoring the environmental regulation that protected the local (8. ________) species.

Frustrated by these oversights, Mr. Smith immediately raised the issues with the CEO, Steve Applegate. While discussing, the situation continued to devolve when Mr. Applegate’s (9._________) burst into the office demanding the immediate halt of negotiations.

Apparently, there had been a discussion that morning among the board, and they had decided that they would not sell for less than $1 billion. Their logic was sound: they had heard from (10._________)’s (11._________)’s (12._________) that another manufacturing company sold for that price. Shouldn’t they get a similar price?

Unsure how to respond, Mr. Smith said he would discuss the developments with his colleagues. He ran to his (13._________)  — if he moved fast enough, he might still be able to make it to Axial’s (14._________) Summit.

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