Complete this M&A course to:

  • Avoid missteps in examining M&A valuation models

  • Detect risks in the formulation of valuation models and pro forma forecasts

  • Construct and optimize the M&A valuation process to validate a deal thesis

Curriculum | M&A Valuation Master Class

Building a valuation model for M&A

  • Understanding and comparing various valuation methodologies
  • Understanding a discounted cash flow model
  • Understanding valuation multiples
  • Understanding the LBO valuation model used by PE firms
  • Estimating growth rates and terminal value
  • Methods for determining the discount rate
  • Methods for selecting multiples


Governance of the valuation process

  • Understanding risk premiums
  • Stress-testing valuation models / identifying bias
  • Applying appropriate valuations discounts
  • Testing assumptions in diligence
  • Understanding valuation ratios and drivers
  • Using outside advisors for quality-of-earnings and fairness opinions
  • Validating and stress testing the valuation


Applying the valuation model

  • Linking valuation modeling and bids/LOIs
  • Differences applying valuation principles to public companies versus private companies
  • Adapting valuation for venture-backed and high growth companies, distressed companies, and minority interests
  • Using valuation sensitivity analysis to maintain pricing discipline
  • Linking valuation to deal structure
  • Knowledge capture / process refinement
  • Avoiding common mistakes and pitfalls


Upon completion you will receive 5.5 CLE credit hours (if applicable) and a Certificate of Competition.

Certificate of Completion

You will also be invited to join a confidential discussion space for exchanging ideas, best practices, recommendations, and information with other M&A Master Class alumni.

Faculty | M&A Valuation Master Class

Professor Donna Hitscherich is a Senior Lecturer of Finance, director of the Private Equity Program, and a Bernstein Faculty Leader at the Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Center for Leadership and Ethics at Columbia Business School.

Prior to her position at Columbia, Professor Hitscherich had a career in investment banking, holding positions at CS First Boston, J.P. Morgan & Co. Inc., and Banc of America Securities. At J.P. Morgan, she helped found the takeover defense team and served as a senior member of the advisory review committee, which was responsible for all of the M&A fairness opinions issued by the company. 

As a managing director in the mergers and acquisitions group of Banc of America Securities, she was secretary of the firm’s fairness-opinion review committee and a major contributor to the firm’s training programs for managing directors and associates.

Prior to her investment banking career, Professor Hitscherich was a corporate lawyer at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.

She has been teaching for the Transaction Advisors Institute since 2021.


  • Professor Hitscherich is a great instructor and is engaging. I learned a few things today and it was good to interact with peers in breakout rooms.

    Vice President of Corporate Development at Sony

  • Professor Hitscherich's presentation exceeded my expectations. She covered a lot of material at a "user friendly" level and kept my attention from start to finish. Time well spent for me.

    Vice President, Deputy General Counsel at Carlisle Companies

  • This M&A Master Class was interesting and relevant, supported by great discussions and an awesome instructor.

    Senior Manager, Corporate Strategy & Development at Raytheon Technologies

  • The M&A Valuation Master Class was terrific. The exchanges with the professor and participants were invaluable. The course material was very informative and I'll use it in the future.

    Senior Vice President, Secretary and General Counsel at Graybar Electric

  • The M&A Master Class was a great source of information. Wonderful examples, very digestible and engaging. Having resources to view on your own, in parallel to the presentation and discussion was extremely helpful. Without much background in the M&A space, but a strong foundation in finance, economics and modeling, it helped bridge some knowledge gaps and identify key areas for future learning.

    Analyst at JLL

  • This course really helps break the valuation process into more digestible information. Professor Hitscherich is an excellent lecturer and her passion for M&A really shines through, and in-turn makes the lecture more engaging.

    Corporate Development Analyst at Oshkosh Corporation

Who Should Participate

M&A Master Classes are solely for public-company corporate development and integration leaders, in-house M&A counsel, chief financial officers, chief executive officers, board members, and private equity investors. See past M&A Conference Speaking Faculty. If you are a qualified corporate M&A professional.

Registrations for individuals who are not in-house M&A professionals will be canceled and refunded, less a $100 bank fee.  

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