Firmex CEO Joel Lessem On How He Sold His Company Twice And Other Valuable M&A Strategies (#018)

"What matters for me and what I've learned over the last 14 years is that I helped other people be successful. " -Joel Lessem

Joel Lessem has over 25 years experience in successfully accelerating revenues and growth of businesses. Under his leadership, Firmex is rapidly becoming a standard for sharing large volumes of highly confidential and sensitive documents for corporate transactions, litigation and compliance. Firmex is a rule of 40 business delivering strong investor returns and high customer and employee satisfaction scores.

Prior to co-founding Firmex in 2006, Joel drove the US growth of Point Force leading to the company's acquisition in 2004.  In 1999, Joel co-founded Crescent logic, a software company that provided online equity research publishing tools for investment banks.


  • The lucrative power of an option plan when selling your company
  • Why you should always take enough money off the table if you decide to stay on after selling your business
  • How to determine if you have what it takes to stay in the company after exiting
  • What private equity groups bring to the table that other buyers don't
  • How an auction process helped Joel get top dollar when selling Firmex
  • The benefits an auction brings to the merger and acquisition process
  • What to expect in due diligence
  • How to adapt your mindset when starting the process of selling your business
  • What Joel's company, Firmex, does and its role in the mergers and acquisitions industry
  • The power of a virtual data room and why you need one
  • How a virtual data room works
  • Why a virtual data room can save you from making costly and embarrassing mistakes
  • How Firmex had approximately 15% of the deal volume in North America
  • Why it's important to put yourself in the buyer's shoes to help guide you through due diligence
  • How Firmex has responded to COVID-19 to serve its clients and protect its employees
  • When you're prepared you have choices. Joel talks about industries benefiting from COVID-19.
  • Joel discusses how honesty, fairness, collaboration, and shared success are his values
  • Why leaders can adopt these values to have a healthy and successful culture
  • What drives Joel is helping other people being successful

This podcast is brought to you by Deep Wealth. Are you thinking about selling your business? You have once chance to get it right and you better make it count. Learn how the Deep Wealth experience helps maximize company value before you sell. Master the same exit strategies we used to increase our company value 10X with our 9-figure exit.

Enjoy the interview!


Firmex: The World's Most Trusted Virtual Data Room

Joel Lessem on LinkedIn

The eBook Why You Suck At Selling Your Business And What You Can Do About It (Today)

The Deep Wealth Experience

This podcast is brought to you by the Deep Wealth Experience. In the world of mergers and acquisitions, 90% of deals fail. Of the successful deals, business owners leave millions of dollars on the deal table.

Who are we and how do we know? We're the 9-figure exit guys. We said "no" to a 7-figure offer and "yes" to a 9-figure offer two years later.  In the process we increased the value of our company 10X.

During our liquidity event journey, we created a 9-step preparation process. It's the quality and depth of your preparation that increases your business value.

After our 9-figure exit we committed ourselves to leveling the playing field. The Deep Wealth Experience helps you create a launch plan in 90-days. Our solution is resilient, relentless, and gets results. Enjoy the certainty that you'll capture the maximum value on your liquidity event.

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The list below has the most recent episodes of The Sell My Business Podcast. Click on any title to find the show notes, transcripts, and additional resources.
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mergers and acquisitions
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