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Confidential Information Memorandum (CIM)

Step-by-Step Guide to Understanding the Confidential Information Memorandum (CIM)

Last Updated May 15, 2024

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What is the Format of a CIM?

Under the context of M&A, the confidential information memorandum, or “CIM”, is a document prepared early on in the sell-side process in conjunction with the seller’s investment banker to offer potential buyers with an overview of the company on sale.

The function of a CIM is essentially alike a marketing document, in which the sell-side banker compiles a list of potential buyers that have expressed interest in pursuing an acquisition.

The CIM is designed to put the selling company in the best possible light and provide buyers with a framework for performing preliminary due diligence.

The following are some key sections of a confidential information memorandum (CIM).

  • An overview of the key financials, products or business lines
  • A summary of historical financials and projections
  • A review of the company’s competitive landscape, operations, business lines, products and strategy

How to Prepare a CIM

The seller’s investment banking deal team plays a large role in the creation and distribution of the CIM.

Usually, senior deal team members will solicit detail from the seller.

The M&A analyst will turn that detail into an appealing presentation.

Preparing the CIM can be time-consuming, involving countless iterations and revisions.

Learn More → Investment Banking Primer

Investment Banking CIM Example

Use the form below to download a sample Confidential Information Memorandum (CIM):

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CIMs, like investment banking pitchbooks, don’t usually make it out there to the public. Fortunately, a few are in the public domain. Above is an example of a CIM prepared by Bear Stearns in 2007 for American Casino & Entertainment Properties (ACEP).

At the time, ACEP was owned by Carl Icahn and was ultimately acquired by Whitehall Real Estate Funds for $1.3 billion.

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Jihoon Kim
February 24, 2022 3:52 am

Dear Wallstreetprep,

Would it be possible to receive more sample CIMs related to sales of corporations rather than an real-estate based entity?

Brad Barlow
February 24, 2022 3:38 pm
Reply to  Jihoon Kim

Hi, Jihoon,

Can you clarify what you mean by it being possible? Do you mean are they more likely to be publicly available?

Brad

Jihoon Kim
February 24, 2022 7:06 pm
Reply to  Brad Barlow

Hi Brad,

Thanks for the prompt reply.

Could you send me links to or tell me how I can access more sample CIMs that are publicly available? I would like to see CIMs regarding sales of more manufacturing or service-oriented corporations rather than real estate, if possible.

Last edited 2 years ago by Jihoon Kim
Brad Barlow
February 27, 2022 7:39 pm
Reply to  Jihoon Kim

Hi, Jihoon,

Please enter your name and email for the sample CIM mentioned in the article. I am afraid that finding other CIMs and sending them to you is beyond the scope of our support.

Brad

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