Chart Your Path

Credentials That Count

Demonstrate Your Commitment to M&A Excellence

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The Standard in M&A Certification

Since its inception in 2016 as the corporate M&A sector’s first-ever professional development certificate program, CMAS® has steadily grown over the years to be the global standard of M&A distinction. Becoming a Certified M&A Specialist® helps you showcase your M&A competencies and display your commitment to being an effective leader for growth by acquisitions.

The CMAS® Program is designed especially for officers and company leaders who want to learn and master the fundamentals and best practices within the M&A life cycle from real experts in M&A leadership — experienced practitioners and luminaries in the field.

The path to becoming a Certified M&A Specialist® combines flexible elective courses that let you focus on the subject areas of most value to you, the submission of your own field experiences, and a foundational exam.

The Benefits of Becoming a Certified M&A Specialist®

Recognition as a CMAS® documents your M&A education and experiences as you seek greater responsibility within your company or should you pursue future career changes.

Awarded by the recognized authority on exemplary M&A leadership, and sanctioned by the Board of M&A Standards, your stature as an M&A Specialist helps you develop your corporate M&A competencies.

The M&A Leadership Council can help you create a schedule to complete your CMAS®. Click here for the training calendar to select the curriculum and activities that meet your needs and fit your schedule.

How it Works - The Three E's

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STEP 1: EDUCATION - Complete Your Course Work

  • Candidates begin their course of study by attending the various M&A Leadership Council training courses; these are sanctioned by the Board of M&A Standards
  • Credits are awarded for each hour of attendance at these programs
  • See the full calendar of training programs

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STEP 2: EXPERIENCE - Submit Your M&A Experience

  • Candidates build on the knowledge and insights gained from "The Art of M&A®" courses
  • The documentation of real-world experience confirms a candidate’s qualification for certification; at least one Experience Submission Form will be completed by the candidate and evaluated by the M&A Leadership Council
  • Credits awarded will range from 25 to 100 per Initiative; your submission(s) will be evaluated on deal size and type/complexity; duration of your experience in your role; how instrumental you were to the success of the deal; any innovations contributed and/or new learnings that were gleaned as a result of the experience

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STEP 3: EXAM - Pass the Fundamentals Exam

  • Once a minimum of 200 credits have been accumulated through education and experience, a candidate is eligible to take an online exam
  • Information in the exam is based on the contents of the M&A Library provided to all active candidates
  • The exam is a rigorous test of 60 questions, rooted in the fundamentals of M&A Strategy, Due Diligence and Integration

Sample Paths to Certification
Effective 12/16/2022

Sample Path #1 Sample Path #2 Sample Path #3
Item Credits Item Credits Item Credits
The Art of M&A® for Integration Leaders / In-Person 70 The Art of M&A® for HR Leaders / In-Person 70 The Art of M&A® for Integration Leaders / Live-Online 42
The Art of M&A® for Due Diligence Leaders / In-Person 70 The Art of M&A® for Integration Leaders / Virtual  42 The Art of M&A® for Due Diligence Leaders / Live-Online 42
Experience Form #1 50 Experience Form #1 50 The Art of M&A® for HR Leaders / Live-Online 42
Experience Form #2 25 Experience Form #2 25 Experience Form #1 50
    Experience Form #3 25 Experience Form #2 25

The fee to launch your certification journey is $1250 and includes:

Study Materials

  • M&A LIBRARY: Candidates will receive the electronic version of our newest book, The Art of M&A®, 5th Edition - this book will enable you to pass the Fundamentals Exam
  • FREE VIRTUAL COURSES: Active CMAS® candidates will receive FREE admission to all 2024 M&A Leadership Council Virtual public training courses.
  • M&A COMPETENCIES TRAINING BOOK: from the Board of M&A Standards. This book defines the knowledge, skills, attributes and behaviors required to drive excellence in M&A activities. This Framework includes the identification of 13 Competencies that are applied across four roles within the M&A practice.

Program Aids

  • EXPERIENCE SUBMISSION(S): You will receive a sample Experience Form as well as a Planning Guide
  • TRACKING & LOG-IN CREDENTIALS: A personalized dashboard will allow you to track your progress toward certification
  • EXPERIENCE LIBRARY: Your earned CMAS® credentials will give you access our exclusive compilation of Experience Submissions (case studies), which include M&A best practices, project objectives, outcomes, and key learnings

CMAS sample certificate

When You Become a Certified M&A Specialist (CMAS),
the Council Will:

  • Provide a beautiful frameable certificate of completion to you by mail
  • Post an announcement to the M&A Leadership Council’s LinkedIn page to share the news
  • Provide you with a CMAS® email signature badge

Have more questions? See the CMAS Program FAQ or send us an email for more information - [email protected]