Special reports: Advancing the middle market through Most Influential Women, M&A Mid-Market Awards and Rising Stars

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To celebrate deals, dealmakers and dealmaking firms, Mergers & Acquisitions produces three special reports every year: the Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A; the M&A Mid-Market Awards; and the Rising Stars of Private Equity. These projects embody the mission of our recently relaunched and renamed parent company, Arizent, which is to advance the financial and professional service industries, including the middle market M&A community.

We encourage our audience to nominate candidates for all our special reports. Here’s an overview, including timelines. Note: There are no fees associated with any of them. Nominations are accepted only through electronic forms on our website, themiddlemarket.com.

On April 2, 2020, we announced the winners of the 13th Annual M&A Mid-Market Awards. For full coverage of the 2019 winners, including Vista Equity Partners' Robert F. Smith, Piper Jaffray, Audax Private Equity and more, see Meet the winners of Mergers & Acquisitions’ M&A Mid-Market Awards. As with all our special reports, nominations are helpful but not required. There is no limit on the number of nominations, for any award category or categories, submitted by a firm or individual. The awards honor leading dealmakers and deals that set the standard for transactions in the middle market in the previous year. We look for companies and individuals who overcame the challenges the year brought, embodied the trends of the period and took their businesses to the next level. We bestow awards in eight categories: Deal of the Year, Dealmaker of the Year, Private Equity Firm of the Year, Investment Bank of the Year, Private Equity Seller of the Year, Strategic Buyer of the Year, Law Firm of the Year, and Lender of the Year. We open the nomination process in December, with a late January deadline, and announce the winners on TheMiddleMarket.com in late March and in the April issue of the magazine.

The nomination process has closed, and we are currently producing the report, which we’ll publish online at the end of June. We look for individuals who are full-time private equity investors and whose best days are yet to come. These are the folks you predict will one day play a key leadership role at your PE firm – or will head up their own. There is no age cutoff. We publish the list in the July/August issue of the magazine. For more on the nomination process, see: Rising Stars of Private Equity 2020: Call for Nominations. In 2019, we named 10 Rising Stars of Private Equity, including Austin Collier, Branford Castle Partners; Shawn Domanic, Sterling Partners; and Sophia Popova, Summit Partners. For profiles and video interviews, see Meet Mergers & Acquisitions' 2019 Rising Stars of Private Equity. For Q&As, see 10 Rising Stars of Private Equity tell their tales.

Mergers & Acquisitions has named the 2020 Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A. This marks the fifth year we have produced the list, which recognizes female leaders with significant influence inside their companies and in the wider dealmaking world. It’s been gratifying to watch the project evolve over the years – and become more influential itself. This year, we received more nominations than ever before. As a result, we expanded the number honored to 42 in 2020, up from 36 in 2019. Many dealmakers are new to our list, including Rockwood Equity Partners' Kate Faust, William Blair's Shay Brokemond and Avante Capital Partners' Ivelisse Simon. Read our full coverage of all the champions of change on our list, including Q&As with each individual. We open up the nomination process in September.

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