The Acquirer’s Multiple® is the valuation ratio used to find attractive takeover candidates.
It examines several financial statement items that other multiples like the price-to-earnings ratio do not, including debt, preferred stock, and minority interests; and interest, tax, depreciation, amortization.
The Acquirer’s Multiple® is calculated as follows:
Enterprise Value / Operating Earnings*
It is based on the investment strategy described in the book Deep Value: Why Activist Investors and Other Contrarians Battle for Control of Losing Corporations.
The Acquirer’s Multiple® differs from The Magic Formula® Earnings Yield because The Acquirer’s Multiple® uses operating earnings in place of EBIT. Operating earnings is constructed from the top of the income statement down, where EBIT is constructed from the bottom up. Calculating operating earnings from the top down standardizes the metric, making a comparison across companies, industries and sectors possible, and, by excluding special items–earnings that a company does not expect to recur in future years–ensures that these earnings are related only to operations. Similarly, The Acquirer’s Multiple® differs from the ordinary enterprise multiple because it uses operating earnings in place of EBITDA, which is also constructed from the bottom up.
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