” Our focus goes beyond the acquisition or merger itself – what interests us is the underlying strategy. ”
Wanda van Kampen,
Manager Disruptive M&A, Fast Ventures.
Within Deloitte Financial Advisory, Wanda van Kampen, Manager Disruptive M&A, Fast Ventures, assists large companies with their investments in or cooperation with scale-ups.
'After graduating, I started off working at a major bank for more than five years. I look back on those years fondly; it was fun, I learned a great deal and I got to work with large companies. But then I decided to look for an organisation where I could work in an advisory role with more focus on new technologies.
At Deloitte I get the best of both worlds: I'm working with a perfect mix of large companies and new technologies. To be precise, we help large companies with their investments in or in cooperation with innovative scale-ups. Scale-ups are young tech companies who have grown out of the start-up phase. Typically, they have been in business for a couple of years, have a sizable workforce and generate annual sales of one million. Young technology companies often boldly take the risks that large, established organisations tend to avoid. At Deloitte you get every opportunity to follow the latest developments and become a specialist – and that's not all. When you pitch your ideas on how to help Deloitte get ahead of future market changes, you can tell that the other departments give serious thought to them and provide valuable feedback.
Technology is evolving at such a fast pace that it's increasingly difficult for corporates to stay on top of it all – and that's where those small, young companies come in. Naturally, I personally have to keep up with new developments as well. Fortunately, I've always enjoyed that. To keep ourselves in the loop, we regularly attend events where start-ups pitch their purpose. We also organise meetings with other companies' venture funding departments.
Knowing that cookie-cutter solutions wouldn't work anyway, we don't show up pretending to have all the answers. We meet our clients and explore problems and opportunities together. That way, we quickly figure out how we can best help them. The traditional world of mergers and acquisitions is more target-driven. The key questions: what are the acquisition opportunities worldwide, and how does that fit into the client’s strategic roadmap? But Deloitte's focus goes beyond the acquisition or merger itself – what really interests us is the disruption going on worldwide and how the client can best align their strategy to actually benefit from that. We have a totally different approach toward the sector.
Say a corporate wants to invest in a particular market segment, like blockchain technology companies. We don't just give them a list of blockchain start-ups. We explore all companies with any ties to blockchain technology to map out the entire 'ecosystem', so to say. Because the client gets the full picture from us, they may choose to invest in companies that are not an obvious choice, but that absolutely matter for the segment.
If you have a vision on how companies can prepare for tomorrow's technology, now is the time to join Deloitte.
Since our team wasn't assembled that long ago, we think of ourselves as something of a start-up within Deloitte. It means we can be very agile, not just in what we do but also in what we offer clients; we respond fast when new ventures and opportunities open up. We often work on projects that have never been done before. Of course, without any script to follow, flexibility is key. All this is reflected in our name: Disruptive M&A Fast Ventures.
Ironically perhaps, our diversity is what brings our team together. We’re ten men and women from various nationalities and educational backgrounds. Some of us come from more traditional M&A positions, others previously worked in corporate, finance or innovation. Whoever you are, what matters is that you think differently. Naturally, when we all have our own ideas, that sometimes leads to initial disagreements. But it's also what keeps us on our toes. Challenging each other is how we achieve the best results together.
What impact will you make?
Are you looking for a job that’s out of the ordinary, that you can truly make your own? Do you want to work, like Wanda, in an inspiring environment with exceptional people? Check out our vacancies and apply!