Then and now

News, trends and tips for federal contractors

The signs that your company is for sale have changed since 2002, as presented at the 2007 Greater Washington Government Contractors of the Year gala by Rich LaFleur of Grant Thornton LLP and Craig Chason of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman.

2002: The articles of incorporation are dusted off for the first time.

2007: Board minutes are being drafted for the past five years.

2002: Bills from attorneys and CPAs arrive saying "? in connection with a strategic transaction."

2007: Bills are still coming, five years later.

2002: The chief executive officer is heard using the term value proposition.

2007: Now the CEO is asking, "Does the term earn out contain a hyphen?"

2002: Too many "suits" in the conference room.

2007: The guest log at the front desk bears the letters "KKR" and "R Knop."

2002: The word novation slips out to your contracts department.

2007: The CEO has enrolled in a class about the Small Business Administration recertification rules.

2002: The cleaning staff reports the eerie glow of copiers running at midnight.

2007: Your chief information officer is purchasing another server to house something called a data room.

2002: The chief financial officer starts talking about "multiples of trailing 12 months' earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization."

2007: The CFO starts talking about "multiples of forecasted 12 months' EBITDA."

2002: There are beach property magazines in the mailroom, and the CEO is taking fishing lessons.

2007: The CEO asks whether the subprime meltdown will affect beach house values.

2002: Stock options the CEO always promised are being granted.

2007: Stock options the CEO always promised are granted ? and dated 2002.

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