We were lucky enough to have our Neotas Summer party at Sandown races last night (photo below!) and with this came the realisation of the difficulties in backing the right horse. But how can horse racing be linked to the world of investment and due diligence?

When the horses are walked round the paddock, there isn’t much to set them apart. Arguably less thinking time is spent during the selection process at a fun race day – and of course considerably less than in the boardroom – but there are still checks that can be made using information openly available.

Here are just a few points to consider before the horses are under starter’s orders:

  • What is the form? How many times has the horse previously won. Are there any prior red flags raised? The form is perhaps the strongest indicator of what to expect.
  • What is the network? Believe it or not, horses have networks too. Trainers, owners, jockeys, even their next of kin. All help to build up a picture of the good or bad.
  • What is the going? Will the racecourse itself affect the horse? Is there a particular pattern seen with horses in particular conditions?

There are of course various other factors but putting these and the odds aside, the horse in question is theoretically profiled. Even its network can be scanned quickly by studying the form.

So how does this relate to investment?

Naturally, when investing money to receive potential returns, it is important to know where your money is going. Parallels can be drawn (although a slightly tenuous link) to the world of corporate investment.

Before a private equity deal for instance, extensive due diligence checks are made to screen the company, its background and its stakeholders.

“Approximately 50% of all deals fall through during the due diligence stage.” – Forbes

This serves as a reminder of the risks associated with the due diligence stage, despite the time and resources spent to identify any red flags. When looking into specific individuals and connecting the dots (for instance with the Directors of a company being invested in), Neotas co-founder & CEO Vipul Mishra reminds us:

Neotas uses open source intelligence to uncover digital trails, identify and mitigate risks and enhance due diligence processes.  Some may even say we shorten the odds.

Find out how we have recently helped protect the business interests of investors and private equity firms – request a free sample report here.