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Inside Nasdaq’s Acquisition of Quandl: Lessons on Timing and Negotiation for Entrepreneurs

Tammer Kamel

In 2011, Tammer Kamel launched Quandl, a company that provided investors with data designed to give them a competitive trading edge.

For example, Quandl offered subscriptions that let investors access private jet flight information for public companies as a predictor for M&A activity.

By 2018, Quandl had grown to 75 employees. Kamel saw industry giants entering the space, but knowing the time and capital investment it would take to build a competitive offering, he believed they would prefer to acquire Quandl.

Kamel began shopping the business around, and shortly after, Nasdaq acquired Quandl for a life-changing sum.

In this episode, you’ll learn how to:

  • Weigh the pros and cons of raising venture capital.

  • Compete with a giant with a stranglehold on your industry.

  • Negotiate the sale of your business with a direct competitor (without giving away your secrets).

  • Pinpoint the ideal time to sell your company.

  • Avoid sabotaging your relationship with an acquirer.

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More About Tammer Kamel

Tammer Kamel founded Quandl, a financial data platform, which received venture funding from Silicon Valley and was later acquired by Nasdaq in 2018. After the acquisition, Tammer has been advising various startups while searching for new opportunities to either start their own venture or join a team that could benefit from their expertise. Tammer’s training is in computer engineering, and he possesses expertise in technology, financial markets, and data science.


Due-Diligence: Due diligence is an investigation, audit, or review performed to confirm facts or details of a matter under consideration. In the financial world, due diligence requires an examination of financial records before entering into a proposed transaction with another party. Source.

Earn-out: Earnout or earn-out refers to a pricing structure in mergers and acquisitions where the sellers must “earn” part of the purchase price based on the performance of the business following the acquisition. Source.

Letter of Intent (LOI): A letter of intent (LOI) is a document declaring the preliminary commitment of one party to do business with another. The letter outlines the chief terms of a prospective deal. Commonly used in major business transactions, LOIs are similar in content to term sheets. One major difference between the two, though, is that LOIs are presented in letter formats, while term sheets are listicles in nature. Source.


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