2010 BVMegatrends: bifurcation but not unification

BVWireIssue #86-2
November 11, 2009

It’s been nearly 30 years since the book Megatrends was a megahit, identifying speed and networking as the major drivers of competitive markets (think FedEx and Facebook). With this concept in mind, the most recent ASA E-Letter (Nov. 4, 2009) from Bill Quackenbush identifies four “BVMegatrends” for our maturing profession:

  • Internationalization. This actually comprises two subtrends: economic globalization and the internationalization of BV standards (focused on fair value). “Combine this with the drive towards convergence of accounting standards (FASB & IASB), and BV fair value work will likely become borderless,” Quackenbush says.
  • Bifurcation. Given the highly litigious nature of the U.S. market, however, traditional fair market value work (tax, bankruptcy, divorce, shareholder litigation, etc.) may continue to diverge from fair value for financial reporting, creating “dual tracks” in professional education and application of valuation standards.
  • Institutionalization. “The days of ‘cowboy’ valuation are (nearly) at an end,” Quackenbush writes. Attorneys, auditors, courts, and clients are becoming more sophisticated in valuation concepts and methodologies. The IRS, SEC, and SBA are increasing oversight, and Daubert is a constant challenge. “Like the California Condor, the valuation dabbler is on the endangered species list,” but, “there’s no benefit in maintaining the [BV] dabbler’s habitat.” Watch for BV licensing, regulation, and institutionalization.
  • Unification? Like “world peace,” lots of folks talk about unification of the BV profession but “the lack of a valid economic model, political turf wars, and member intransigence (or apathy) has led and continues to lead nowhere,” Quackenbush observes.

What BVMegatrends do you see? Choose from the four above or add your own by clicking on this quick (two-minute) online survey. We’ll combine the results with the comments sent to Quackenbush for full coverage of BV’s bright future. Stay tuned…

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