Picking a VDR that Speeds Deals for the Airline Industry

Internal M&A teams face tedious tasks, but luckily, technologies, such as a virtual data room (VDR), have revolutionized just how deal teams do their jobs.

27 February 2015


The European airline industry is moving towards consolidation, says an article in World Finance. If so, that means deal timing among buyers and sellers is going to be crucial. But, of course, it’s not just airlines doing M&A that must move fast.

Any dealmaker in a competitive environment, needing to make strategic transactions, has to go quickly. Unfortunately, many dealmakers are also limited by their resources, and can’t move as nimbly as they should.

Internal M&A teams face tedious tasks, such as keeping up with daily emails and meetings (both internally and with third parties). Luckily, technologies, such as the virtual data room (VDR), have revolutionized just how deal teams do their jobs, by automating and streamlining M&A due diligence processes.

M&A Require Speed

Take, for example, Paris-based Worldwide Flight Services Global SA (WFS), an airline cargo and ground services provider with a presence in 120 international airports. On a growth phase, WFS transacts M&A and other projects internationally. To help support its activities, WFS must securely share confidential business information among project stakeholders. To that end, WFS maintained three distinct VDRs running on a single collaboration platform.

However, company staff found supporting three separate VDRs to be expensive and complicated, said WFS Group Chief Financial Officer Sylvain Rivoire. Collapsing WFS' three existing VDRs into one version would have made it challenging to then easily access documents. And the existing system required Java to open and view files. (Fortunately, there’s a work-around for that.)

Avoiding Risks and Complexity

 In general, it is useful to standardize data rooms on one provider, because this can:

  • Simplify customer support processes
  • Enable the creation of intimate account management
  • Reduce training requirements for new users
  • Avoid the costs incurred by maintaining separate licenses and vendor relationships

In 2014, Rivoire looked at Intralinks Dealspace, which was robust enough to absorb the existing VDRs. As Rivoire said: “Intralinks Dealspace was more efficient, more user friendly, less expensive, and more flexible.”

Moreover, Intralinks provided a dedicated project manager, familiar with WFS’ various challenges, and this arrangement streamlined client request processes. Another major attraction was that the Intralinks Viewer didn’t require a Java plug-in, which boosted the VDR’s security and usability.

Expanding the Use of the VDR

Intralinks Dealspace’s enterprise-quality and sophisticated VDR also offers an intuitive interface, one that makes the solution fairly easy to navigate. As Rivoire explained: “It’s easy to share the tool with other people in the group.”

Using our VDR solution, the WFS team saves between 30 percent to 50 percent of the time required to configure and manage a new VDR (compared to the prior system). The solution also serves as the team’s collaboration VDR.

This is just one example of how VDR consolidation can streamline workflows, more securely and cost-effectively than when relying on multiple providers or VDR instances. Want to learn more about WFS? The full case study is here. And if you want to read about how other companies are leveraging Intralinks Dealspace, check out this case study from Abu Dhabai Airports.

Marc Songini

Marc Songini

Marc Songini has worked in the information technology field for more than 16 years. His roles have included those of journalist, analyst, and marketing communications specialist. He admits that when he started out as a cub high tech reporter, Netscape was still rocking the industry with a wondrous new user interface called a “browser.” During his 10 years with International Data Group (IDG), Marc wrote for NetworkWorld and Computerworld, both award-winning magazines. Marc specializes in cloud, enterprise apps, and figuring out the meaning of being human in an automated world.