Merger Match Built for All, But a Good Match for LR

January 14, 2015

In case you missed it, AVC Pre-Flight alumni startup Merger Match presented at 1 Million Cups on Wednesday morning from the Little Rock Chamber.

Here's coverage from Arkansas Business.

Merger Match was launched by independent Little Rock financial/IT consultants Bridget Farris and Alese Stroud to make proper matches out of potential mergers and acquisitions. Their proprietary model initially will focus on the finance industry but is being built to accommodate all industries. 

But they say Little Rock is a great place to launch something like Merger Match.

"Little Rock is home to Stephens, FIS, Acxiom, Euronet, many former tech startups that are now huge companies," Stroud said. "It's home to a wealth of banking and finance companies that know about the deal we want to get involved in."

Farris said they could've launched Merger Match anywhere, and plan to build a client base that spans the globe, but "it does help that Little Rock has a large financial services industry, and we can tap into that and build our contacts here.

"We happen to live here, but it would be a good place to start up anyway."

Farris and Stroud want to capitalize on an 83 percent failure rate for investment deals, and their research revealed that no other company does exactly what Merger Match does: match potential acquisition partners while focusing on post-deal success and analytics. 

Merger Match was simply an idea shared over beers just six weeks ago, Stroud said, and Pre-Flight delivered on its promise to put them on the fast track to market.

"We had this idea but wanted to see what the class was all about," Stroud said. "Pre-Flight made us realize we actually had something. We went from 'let's just do this for fun' to having something that felt real."

Because of the way it's taken off, Stroud said both she and Farris restructured their consulting practices to make time for Merger Match. 

Farris said Pre-Flight exceeded their expectations.

"We didn't expect to get as much out of it as we did," she said. "Bouncing ideas off the Pre-Fligt mentors enabled us to change the approach and fine tune it, and we came out the other end a lot more viable. It's been extremely valuable for us."

AVC's first Pre-Flight finished up in December with its first Pitch Day. The second run begins Jan. 26. More info here

And by the way, 1MC will be moving to the Venture Center's new space at 107 East Markham beginning with the Jan. 28 presentation. 

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