Mergers & Acquisitions Professional (M&AP)

Program Description

The Mergers & Acquisitions Professional (M&AP) is a program designed to meet the needs of auditing, consulting, deal advisory, investment banking, and legal professionals. The M&AP covers all aspects of the transaction process and provides insight into running a successful M&A boutique. Gain knowledge in best practices for the M&A process, valuation, due diligence and also for a unique module on Running a Successful M&A Practice. Gaining the M&AP designation signals to employers, colleagues and clients that you invest in being the best M&A practitioner you can be.



The Mergers & Acquisitions Professional (M&AP) certification dives into the nuts and bolts of the transaction journey—auditing, consulting, and deal advisory are among just a few of the areas visited during the M&AP Training.

Whether managing or advising a merger or acquisition for your company or assisting your clients, we will equip you with the tools and knowledge you need to skip the common pitfalls and succeed.

In the highly interactive on-site course or the self-paced online course, you’ll take your skills to the next level by practicing:

  • Gain insight into international best practices
    Hone new target identification strategies and advanced synergy analyses to close the best deals and navigate common post-merger integration pitfalls.
  • Broaden your horizons
    Identifying the true stakeholders and likely competitors for the target ahead of time, so you’re ready with the right strategies and tactics for closing the transaction without trouble.
  • Taking your practice to the next level
    By “looking ahead and reasoning back,” you’ll practice implementing exceptional value analysis and comprehensive due diligence so you can lead your team into unlocking the most lucrative merger and acquisition opportunities.


The M&AP program is structured in four modules based on our M&AP Framework and Body of Knowledge for Mergers & Acquisitions (for more information click below). It is available to take online or combined with the IM&A onsite.

Essentials of M&A
This module covers the fundamentals of Mergers & Acquisitions:

  • Deal types: What are the different types of transactions that you can use in M&A? There is a whole range of deal types and deal continuum that we look at, e.g. the full spectrum from minority stakes to full acquisitions, various ways to arrange a merger, leveraged buy outs (LBOs), initial public offerings (IPOs), divestitures, spin-offs, equity carve-outs-
  • M&A Process: The program covers both perspectives from a buyer’s perspective (buy side) and from a seller’s perspective (sell-side). We explore how to seek buyers or potential targets (long list & short list) and how to run a sale in various ways (negotiations and auctions).
  • Strategies for M&A: We dive into the strategies for Megers & Acquisitions. How can you create competitive advantage through M&A, divestitures and equity alliance?
  • M&A Negotiation: How can you prepare for the negotiation phase? What are ways to arrange a value creating deal?
  • Introduction to Due Diligence: How do you prepare for and execute a smart Due Diligence to assure value creation? What are the different areas that can be covered in the Due Diligence process?
  • Success Factors in Transactions: We explore the success factors and key challenges and mistakes to avoid. Which M&A tactics work in which industries?
  • Takeover Strategies and Defense Tactics: How can you prepare your company against a hostile takeover attempt and reduce potential threats? Which are the defense mechanisms that you can put into place and how effective are they? Which ways exist to acquire a business successfully in a hostile way?
Due Diligence
In the Due Diligence module, we discuss the key questions and topics to address in a due dilligence. It covers the followin areas of DD indepth:

  • Financial Due Diligence
  • Tax Due Diligence
  • Legal Due Diligence
  • Human Resources (HR) Due Diligence
  • Commercial Due Diligence and
  • other Due Diligence areas
In the valuation module, you will explore the

  • Different Valuation Techniques for Mergers & Acquisitions: Various techniques such as Discounted Cash Flow (DFC) modelling, Transaction and Trading Multiples, and more will be explained step by step including a demonstration of building models in excel.
  • Private Equity & Start Up Valuation
  • Deal Financing & Payment Structure
  • Deal Design & Structure
Running A Successful M&A Practice
The Running a Successful Practice should give you insights of how to attract clients and manage firm as well as M&A projects and portfolios. The following aspects are covered:

  • Business Strategy: How to align the strategy in the private capital markets and to position in the industry of mid-market M&A.
  • Mid-Market Advisory: Environment in the fragmented middle market, the importance of a transition team, the ownership life cycle, demand and supply of companies in this market, Transfer Cycle (example of the US market), capital trends, Corporate Finance for the Mid-market; Public vs. Private Markets; Private Equity and Private Debt; the landscape of Private Equity; Channels for Transfer and the different categories of buyers; how to build a transition Identification of Growth and Cost Synergies and their realization
  • Sale & Purchase Agreements (SPAs): Stock vs. Asset Purchase Agreements; Preambles and Recitals; Seller and Buyer Representations and Warranties; Covenants; Closing Conditions; Indemnification; Termination; General Provisions..
  • Tax Restructuring: Essential points in optimizing tax structures; reasons for tax restructuring; guiding principles; evaluating current tax regimes; Common MNC Structures; Tax Structure on a deal level; Tax efficient transactions
  • M&A Insurance: Transaction liability insurance; Warranty & Indemnity (W&I) Insurance: Buy-side and Sell-side Policies; Advantages of the W&A Insurance; Options in the M&A process; Coverage periods; Key principles; Exclusions; Premium, Retention and Limit; Recent developments with respect to cross-border transactions; Common forms of breaches; Timing of Claims, Claims by Transaction Volumen, and Claim Amounts.
Essentials of M&A

  • Understand the different methods companies can acquire or merge another firm
  • Distinguish between Management Buy Outs and Management Buy Ins
  • Differentiate between spin-off, split-off & carve-outs
  • Classify horizontal & vertical mergers
  • Identify different strategies companies use to exit investments
  • Classify types of tender offers and what constitutes them
  • Analyze and compare different ownership shapes & structures
  • Identify growth factors in M&A transactions
  • Structure & manage M&A portfolios
  • Identify value adding factors in M&A
  • Identify value destroying factors
  • Analyze various success measurement test & methods
  • Classify drivers of profitability in M&A
  • Analyze historical M&A waves and their driving factors
  • Identify factors in Cross Border M&A activity
  • European, Emerging markets, based on regions
  • Evaluate historically largest deals
  • Define characteristics of M&A waves
  • Understand the buy and sell side process, covering both the traditional and holistic view
  • Distinguish between the role of advisors and working with them in an M&A setting
  • Establish framework for potential target buyer and seller searches
  • Identifying relevant industries, companies, locations, financial advisors
  • Preparing long and short lists
  • How do M&A deals originate and the deal flow
  • Discuss necessary agreements and documents in M&A deals
  • Construct due diligence plans and activities
  • Conducting and updating findings over the transaction lifecycle
  • Organizing due diligence teams and data room management
  • Identify various areas that require due diligence runs
  • Conduct due diligence in a cross-border setting
  • Create a minimalistic due diligence
  • Identify warning signs in due diligence results
  • Judge past and present takeovers battles
  • Analyze takeover attacks and strategies for defense
Due Diligence

  • Determine potential deal breakers, negotiations, and quality of earnings
  • Differentiate between a DD and an audit
  • Recognize tax exposures and liabilities
  • Analyze different types of taxes
  • Structure transactions
  • Analyzing current and future liabilities
  • Selecting the right legal counsel
  • Legal and contractual obstacles
  • Analyzing employment contracts, compensation & labor agreements
  • Conducting a cultural due diligence
  • Running a management audit
  • Conceptual & general tools for industry analysis
  • Analyze current and potential customers
  • Conduct a product and technology portfolio analysis
Finance and Valuation

  • Define data points for adjusting multiples
  • Analyze financial statements
  • Interpret P&L, balance sheet, cashflow
  • Differentiate between types of financial statement
  • Analyze application of cashflow, P&L and balance sheet within valuation models
  • Identify different approaches to valuation
  • Interpret the fundamental assumptions in valuation
  • Analyze various valuation techniques
  • Understand the application of various valuation methods and various pros and cons
  • Differentiate between FCFF & FCFE during valuation process
  • Define use of FCFF & FCFE
  • Analyze present and future value of a firm and equity
  • Understand FCFF/FCFE application during valuation
  • Classify and define equity and firm valuation
  • Understand risk and volatility of a portfolio compared to market
  • Apply DCF valuation model
  • Estimate shareholder equity
  • Understand DCF valuation using FCFF
  • Define CAPM model and its application
  • Define components of cost of debt
  • Estimate cost of debt
  • Determine ratings using financial statements
  • Assign weights for cost of capital calculation
  • Understand application of sensitivity analysis in financial modeling
  • Analyze impact on end results
  • Identify value of shares through growth rates and cost of capital
  • Define valuation by market approach method
  • Analyze Guideline Public Company and market variables
  • Conceptualize various multiples used in valuation process
  • Interpret adjustments
  • Analyze and apply multiples
  • Define Enterprise Value (EV)
  • Analyze various EV multiples
  • Understand application of EV multiples in valuation
  • Calculate and interpret PE ratios
  • Apply PE ratios for market wide comparison
  • Identify drawbacks for PE ratios
  • Define investment structure
  • Understand & analyze investor return calculations
  • Defining pre and post money valuation
  • Understanding & implementing shareholding analysis before and after investment
  • Define returns
  • Understand straight equity vs. mezzanine investment structure
  • Differentiate impact of both investment structures
  • Establish valuation method within the framework of a given case study
  • Understanding historical financials as a means of projecting value
  • Analyzing assumptions to build a financial model
  • Identify different cashflow measures
  • Account for operating lease expenses
  • Classify & capitalize R&D expenses
  • Analyze effects of taxes on cash flow estimations and change in working capital
  • Defining financial assumptions
  • Constructing an Assumptions Sheet
  • Analyzing data points related to personnel & salaries
  • Calculating growth rates/fluctuations in headcounts and salary, etc
  • Defining cost projections/assumptions
  • Defining revenues based on assumption sheet
  • Analyzing sales prices and volumes
  • Modeling total revenue projection as part of valuation process
  • Understanding components of cost
  • Analyzing cost projections based on component analysis
  • Understanding operating costs
  • Calculating total operating cost projection as part of valuation
  • Defining depreciation values
  • Understanding straight line method in depreciation calculation
  • Defining interest expense
  • Calculating net interest expense
  • Defining working capital
  • Understanding how the operating cycle relates to need for liquidity
  • Understanding inventory, receivable and payable days
  • Analyzing key ratios and defining assumptions
  • Analyzing cashflows from previous financial statements
  • Projecting cashflows
  • Understanding interest coverage
  • Defining leverage, liquidity and activity ratios
  • Understanding return on average equity, average capital employed and average assets (ROAE, ROACE, ROAA)
  • Understanding ROAE for shareholder returns
  • Understanding ROACE for debt & equity holders
  • Understanding ROAA for debt and equity holders
Running a Successful Practice

  • Understanding the goals of a practice
  • Analyze current assets and performing a GAP analysis
  • Understanding strategic planning & establishing a strategic planning model
  • Defining Private Capital Markets
  • Understanding the current environment
  • Analyzing fragmented vs. big picture view
  • Understanding the PCM landscape and analyzing ‘professional’ valuation today
  • Understanding principle purchase agreements
  • Defining 9 articles in an agreement, from Definitions to General Provisions
  • Understanding the reasons for tax restructuring
  • Defining guiding principles
  • Analyzing issues for consideration in current tax regimes
  • Analyzing tax structure on a deal level
  • Understanding Warranty & Indemnity insurance (W&I Insurance)
  • Analyzing sell and buy-side policy and the advantages of W&I insurance
  • Defining options in the M&A process


Key Facts

  • 30 hours onsite or approx. 60 hours online
  • Leading faculty from academia and the industry
  • Split into four, easy-to-digest modules
  • Content updated regularly
  • Pre-requisite: Hold an academic degree (e.g. PhD, JD, DBA, MBA or Bachelor Degree); and/or hold one or more professional designations (such as CPA, CFA, CAIA or equivalent)

Course Fee

  • Online Program $2’990 USD
  • Onsite Program $4’990 USD


  • Life-long access to the most up-to-date online course content *
  • Onsite programs include hard copies of all presentations and materials
  • M&AP Designation upon completion
  • First year of Annual Membership Fee
  • Access to the entire IMAA e-Library
  • Global network of charterholders and experts
  • Continued Education / Continued Professional Development: 10 hours bi-annually of relevant online or onsite education provided by IMAA (online CE/CPD included in the annual membership fee)


While you will meet an international mix of participants from various industries, the Mergers and Acquisitions program is designed for mid-management to senior executives in the C-Suite, directors of public and private companies, board leaders, and heads of strategy and corporate development. It is also geared toward advisers, investment bankers, transaction lawyers, and private equity investors. Individuals and teams are welcome to attend.

By Function

By Industry

By Region

After successfully completing the course, you will receive the M&AP Charter. The M&AP is the most internationally recognized designation offered in the field of M&A. This charter signals to peers, clients, employers, and other professionals that you have completed the most comprehensive M&A education program available and are proficient in all areas of the mergers and acquisitions process.

Colleen Murray

Associate General Counsel & Chief Counsel M&A and HSSE, Massy Group of Companies

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Colleen Murray

I was in a search of M&A training to enhance my overall knowledge on all aspects of M&A from the stage of initial business strategy to post merger integration. I was impressed with the course contents of the IM&A and M&AP programs, the collection of data on global M&As and the access to resources via the e-library during and now after completion of the programs. The course content for each module was presented in a very structured, easy to follow and yet comprehensive manner. The case studies and other assignments were practical and an effective means to ensure transfer of knowledgeThe course content was indeed helpful to my current profession as well as useful in attaining greater understanding of the roles played by other professional disciplines within the M&A process. I would recommend the programme to my peers and colleagues.
Enrique G. Chavez Montes

Management Consultant

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Enrique G. Chavez Montes

I decided to enroll in the M&AP program because I wanted to deepen my knowledge of all the processes involved in an M&A transaction as well as learn about global best practices in these processes, in the same way, to hear the various practical experiences of other participants. The course was very complete, addressed with the necessary depth for each of the topics. Its virtual modality was for me, a great advantage, since knowing that if I could not attend a live session, it was possible to watch the recording, without losing the interventions and exchange of experiences with other participants was very important. I recommend this course to all those professionals interested in improving their skills in M&A to provide a solid specialized consultancy. The designation obtained as a M&A Professional has given me as an endorsement of a globally recognized entity (IMAA) in front of my clients.
Hannah Barber

Chief Operating Officer, Optimal Management Solutions

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Hannah Barber

I decided to enroll in the M&AP program to further my knowledge and skill set in the entire transaction process of mergers & acquisitions. By having a certification in M&A from a recognized program like IMAA has helped me by gaining a better understanding how to manage the complexities of the M&A process in terms of determining a rationale, plus how to select and value acquisition targets in the future. The online format was structured to help busy professional work at their own pace, while gaining quality education from faculty experts in the M&A field. I highly recommend this program, as you and your peers will gain new insights into why M&A strategy is related to all elements of the process, including valuation, deal structure, due diligence, an integration. The faculty discussions, case studies, and real-world M&A simulations enable you to gain experience in successfully navigating a transaction while dealing with a wide array of issues.
Andre Hamilton

Fund Accountant, Roark Capital

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Andre Hamilton

I chose to pursue the IM&A and M&AP programs in order to gain knowledge that would allow me to better identify the tools necessary to enhance the value-add components of the merger and acquisition process. I wanted to sharpen my vantage point of the entire acquisition process from both a macro and micro level. These programs have given me the roadmap to discovering the integral intangibles, that are often times overlooked, which I will utilize in all of my future business endeavors. I decided to take the courses online due to the inherent accessibility and convenience of being able to receive the same world renown, quality education from the comfort of my home. I found that the online content was strategically constructed in a way that was digestible and relatable which allowed me to view the concepts from various perspectives. I felt strongly that by completing the IM&A and M&AP programs I could then leverage the knowledge accumulated for value-add purposes within my current industry. I would most definitely recommend this course to my peers and colleagues.
Ronaldi Wisastra

Deloitte Consulting

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Ronaldi Wisastra

The course content is wonderful. The assignments, case studies, stretched me to dig deep into the work I did in the past or the current client I am working with and have put a different lens on the learning and the work I do. The contents are recently updated and relevant to the current situation. The course has been very beneficial in helping me in my current role such as enlarge my horizons on different facets of M&A, the actors involved, the type of activities and also the nuances behind a transaction. The program helped me in the getting resources and also perspectives on M&A that helped me in my work.
Awais Dilawer

Senior Consultant

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Awais Dilawer

I wanted to have a formal certification in M&A provided by a recognised Institute like IMAA. The course content was quite informative and really helps me in my projects. I got rich information related to the due diligence, processes for merging or acquiring other firms, financial valuation of companies and finally how to successfully integrate the operations after the merger. The tutors are well-experienced and shared their experience and case studies. Doing the course online enabled me not to compromise my regular work. I would surely recommend this course to my peers and colleagues.
Eric Vega

CFO & Partner at Urb. La Colonia

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Eric Vega

Because of the M&A business complexity, it was critical to find a program with a strong concentration of experienced professionals, as well as a program structure that covers insider business knowledge. After analyzing many options, I was convinced that IMAA had what I needed. The program has helped me to better understand the M&A processes so I can apply it in my own company, as well as building a better consulting practice for future clients. I chose the M&A Professional Certificate because I was looking for a certification in M&A to deepen my knowledge in this highly complex field of corporate finance, as well as a program that showed not only the M&A processes, but M&A consulting practice in other areas of the globe. The online program was also the best way for me to combine a high-quality education program with a busy business life. At the end of the program, I could say that my expectations were achieved.
Walt Bowman

Director/Senior Client Adviser at Malt and Company

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Walt Bowman

After researching for on-line certification courses, I came across IMAA. I was very impressed with the credentials of the instructors and the employment backgrounds of certificate holders who supplied testimonials. It also provides a holistic approach to Mergers and Acquisitions worldwide. I found the on-line content to be excellent and very convenient for me to utilize with my work schedule. My certification from a quality group of instructors will be extremely helpful and impressive to my future clients. It shows my commitment to bring them value by my putting forth the effort to prepare with an institute with a highly qualified staff. I found the support staff to be extremely helpful during process and consider them to be not only support staff, but friends. I highly recommend certifications from this institute as the institute provides excellent study material to allow for growth in knowledge of the Mergers and Acquisitions industry.

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Study Options

Due to the current COVID situation with travel restrictions globally and locally, join the M&AP program online.The online format offers an extensive training but with maximum flexibility for busy professionals. This course is designed for self-study with on-demand video lectures specifically produced for the online format. The course assignments include real-life business case studies, multiple choice questions, and more. There is no time constraint to complete the online course; so you can set your own schedule and work at your own pace.

The program is taught by leading faculty members that are practitioners and specialized subject matter experts to provide participants with the most up-to-date and practical content available. The faculty combines global thought leaders and regional experts.

Networking oportunities are provided to connect with an elite and diverse group of professionals and instructors online.

ONLINE Get started right away! $2,990.00 Register Now
Take the number one international M&A Professional program available wordwide online:
  • Real world content developed and instructed by M&A practitioners
  • Well structured and balanced content to succeed in transactions
  • Largest number of experienced experts as instructors
  • Materials specifically designed for online use

You can complete the program part-time while working and without the need to travel to any course or examination location.

Register now and get started with your M&AP Certification program!

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Available worldwide - 24/7

All Course Materials and Access to Bonus E-Library Included

All mandatory material as well as recommended readings are included in your tuition. As a bonus, since learning is a continues process to stay abreast of new challenges and opportunities, you gain free 1-year membership to our unique and extensive Learning Center resources. This covers unlimited access to our proprietary e-Library which includes M&A research, and cutting edge publications from our expert faculty and other global thought leaders.

Additional Information

Accreditation and Recognition

We are the global number #1 provider in M&A education. Companies sign up their employees in order to prepare for transactions or to enhance their qualification for the next promotion. Future employers reach out to us to check the credentials of candidates and their current status as a charterholder. Potential clients look to us to recommend advisors.

We are a high quality provider and are recognized by many other institutions as a continued education provider. Find out more about our accreditations and recognition.

Comparison: Online vs. Onsite Program
Real-life business cases
All mandatory course materials included
Lifelong online access to most current content
1-year Individual IMAA Membership
Start right away
On-Demand video lectures & direct tutoring
Full flexibility
No time constraint
Work from anywhere in the world
Different dates & locations worldwide
Interactive discussions
Networking with peers
Complete the program in 6 days
Meet face to face with faculty
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

If you have any questions, please do reach out to us by:

see our international contact details

How long does it take to complete the M&A Certificate?

The IM&A Certification is designed as a part-time program for professionals. The total time of completion depends on your prior background and time you can devote to this. In total for the online program it may take about 100 hours of study. Our fastest participants complete it within 2 months.

What is included in the fee?

Our tuition fees include all mandatory and recommended study materials. In addition you get access to our e-library.

When can I enroll for and start with the IM&A Certificate?

You can enroll at any time for the Certificate Program online and start right away. For our onsite M&A courses please check the dates and locations.

Can I take the M&A Certificate entirely online?

Yes, you can take the entire program online from anywhere in the world or while travelling. This is what many of our participants do. For the completion of the M&A Certification there is no physical attendance necessary. However, you can combine online with onsite workshops to reach your designation.

How many participants take your M&A programs?

Our courses and programs in Mergers & Acquisitions, Due Diligence, Valuation and Post Merger Integration (PMI) have taken by more than 1’500 participants from all around the world.

What is the difference to other training providers?

We are the number #1 provider and set the standards. Compared with academic executive education offerings, our faculty members are not pure academics – they have closed M&A deals as professionals themselves. So you don’t gain only purely theoretical insights, but you will learn hands-on knowledge. Compared with for-profit providers, we are purely focused on M&A trainings and bring in a solid foundation, great structured approach to learning, and the international dimension – and we reinvest in improving our offering.

What is the difference to other certificate programs?

If you compare our programs with the CFA, CAIA, CIMA, or others – we are purely focused on M&A only and are very complementary to these programs. There is very little overlap among the content and insights that our programs provide. Most of them accept our program as continued education.

Where can I ask more questions about your M&A training?

If you have additional questions, please reach out to us via chat, contact form, or give us a call. We are looking forward to hearing from you and learn about your needs and questions.






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