Business Valuation Course Outline

Mercer’s Business Valuation program will prepare individuals with the ability to identify the fundamental steps to valuing a business, from beginning to end. Participants will learn how to identify an appropriate valuation method based on specific purposes, determine the most appropriate financial analysis of a subject company as it relates to a specific valuation engagement, and recognize the differences in the various standards of value for businesses. Learn more about program details:


Program Outline

Days 1 and 2: Business Valuations—Fundamentals, Techniques, and Theory (FT&T)

  • Structure the elements of a valuation engagement from financial and operational analysis through to a conclusion of value
  • Analyze financial and operational information for a business entity as it relates to a valuation engagement
  • Differentiate the methods found in the three approaches to valuation—Asset, Income, and Market, and determine when it is appropriate to use each approach
  • Identify methods and data sources for developing discount and capitalization rates
  • Determine appropriate adjustments (i.e., premiums and discounts) to be applied to an indicated value
  • Employ professional standards for the development and reporting of a valuation/calculation engagement

Day 3: Business Valuations—Applications and Calculations of the Income and Asset Approaches

  • Determine a value using the Adjusted Net Asset Method under the Asset Approach
  • Determine when it is appropriate to use a Capitalization of Single-Period Earnings Method vs. Discounted Future Earnings Method under the Income Approach
  • Identify appropriate normalization adjustments to apply to a business entity’s balance sheet and income statement
  • Calculate a normalized benefit stream under the Income Approach

Day 4: The Market Approach—Exploring the Pricing Component

  • Recognize the theory behind the Market Approach including its rationale, standards of value, main methods, and governing principles.
  • Identify the key challenges in the application of the Market Approach and explain the current best practices used by valuation practitioners in overcoming and/or minimizing these challenges.
  • Determine when the use of the Completed Transaction Method and/or Guideline Public Company Method is appropriate under the Market Approach.
  • Identify the steps in selecting guideline companies and completed transactions relevant to the Subject Company.
  • Describe the most commonly used valuation multiples, their corresponding drivers, and applicability depending on what level of value is being sought.
  • Explain the process of adjusting valuation multiples to account for differences in size, growth, and business risk.

Day 5 (morning): Valuation in Action—Case Studies: Applying the Principles and Techniques

  • Identify the key challenges, requirements, and nuances in conducting a valuation analysis for various special purposes.
  • Identify the steps in the analysis and valuation of a company in a typical valuation engagement.
  • Apply the three main valuation approaches—Assets, Income, and Market in a live case.
  • Describe the key sections of a valuation report and how to connect the narrative to the quantitative analysis.
  • Explain the process of reconciling the different indications of value in the valuation analysis.

Day 5 (afternoon): Exam Preparation—CVA Proctored Exam and Peer Reviewed Business Valuation Report (Case Study)

Day 6: CVA Proctored Exam

  • The five-hour proctored exam is given at the Mercer University Atlanta classroom location on the Saturday morning following the training.

CVA Certification Process

The certification process consists of two parts:

  • A five-hour proctored exam of multiple-choice questions on NACVA’s Business Valuation Body of Knowledge.
  • A 60–80-hour sample case study provided by NACVA and completion of a comprehensive business valuation report. Candidates have 60 days to complete and submit the case study, starting from the date of the proctored exam. Candidates will be notified of proctor exam results within two weeks; and within two-four months for the case study

CVA Certification Qualifications

For Certified Public Accountants (CPAs)

  • Hold an active, valid, and unrevoked CPA license issued by a legally constituted state authority (the Chartered Accountant [CA] designation issued in Canada is equivalent to the CPA in the U.S.).

For Non-Certified Public Accountants (CPAs)

  • Hold a business degree (i.e., management, economics, finance, marketing, accounting, or other business field) and/or a Master of Business Administration (MBA) or higher business degree from an accredited college or university; and be able to demonstrate with business references or attestations from current or previous employers and/or partners, substantial experience in business valuation, such as:
    • Two years or more full-time or equivalent experience in business valuation and related disciplines
    • Having performed 10 or more business valuations where the applicant’s role was significant enough to be referenced in the valuation report or a signatory on the report
    • Demonstrate knowledge of business valuation theory and practices, which may include having published works and either a Ph.D. in finance or economics or a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) from an accredited institution of higher education. Or, having obtained an accreditation from another recognized valuation-accrediting organization.