The Restructure of the CFQ Qualification
Following requests from professionals within the industry, the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and Chartered Institute for Securities and Investments (CISI) have collaborated on a new syllabus structure and re-launched the Corporate Finance Qualification (CFQ) study course.
The Level 6 programme is considered to represent the Gold Standard qualification for anyone working within the sector of corporate finance and accounting or looking for corporate finance jobs, providing the dual foundations of knowledge and skills needed to operate in a challenging environment. You will sit the first exams in December 2012.
The two tier financial training course which constitutes the Diploma in Corporate Finance comprises:
Paper 1: Corporate Finance Techniques and Theory
• Financial Statement Analysis
• Debt and Equity
• Acquisitions and Disposals and Regulations
• Governance and Ethics
Paper 2: Corporate Finance, Strategy and Advice
• Corporate Strategies
• Mergers and Acquisitions
• Corporate Performance and Reconstructions, and
• additional supporting material for topics 2 and 3
The course is completed through an Integrated Skills Case Study, which you are required to undertake. Eligibility for inclusion in the CFQ financial education course includes the successful completion of the CISI Certificate in Corporate Finance or the ACA qualification.
Syllabus Structure of the Paper 1 Application
The aims of the CFQ finance courses are to provide you with the requisite levels of skills and knowledge to allow you to react effectively to the complex corporate financial situations with which you will be dealing on a daily basis. Course content will include core techniques, strategies and theories, and commercial and ethical guidance to enable an organic delivery of practice.
By the completion of the Paper 1 finance training programme, you will be expected to have the ability to:
1. Complete a high level analysis of financial statements.
2. Assess the value of a range of applications across the financial sector.
3. Deliver an advanced analysis of equity and debt requirements.
4. Determine how or whether value is created through Mergers, Disposals and Acquisitions.
5. Discuss the relevance of UK and EU regulations to current and proposed future actions.
The assessment of the Paper 1 course will take place on December 4th 2012 and consists of a three hour open book exam. For a total of 50 marks, you must answer five from a choice of seven scenario style questions, each with a value of 10 marks. You are advised by CISI that the average study time to offer the optimum chance for success is 200 hours. Entry fees for sitting the exam are from £300.
Mergers, Acquisitions and Disposals Module
You are required to use your learned knowledge and analytical skills to answer questions which will concentrate on a range of different scenarios, demonstrating your comprehension of the study material.
Explain how the following disposal methods are performed and applied to the Sale Process; traditional and alternative disposal methods, identifying and short listing purchasers and approaching potential purchasers.
The Auction Process;
• no-name leases
• information memorandum
• inviting and evaluating offers
Explain how the following stages of acquisitions are performed and applied to a given scenario; identifying potential targets, initial evaluations, approaching potential targets using best practice and consideration.
Explain the following aspects of Mergers, Acquisitions and Disposals and how they will be applied to given scenarios;
• public deals and process overview of transactions
• outlining of regulations
• defence and bid strategies
• the scope of due-diligence
• vendor due-diligence and data rooms, and
• purchase due-diligence
The weightings for the module topics are:
• Financial Statement Analysis - 20 marks
• Valuation - 20 marks
• Debt and Equity - 20 marks
• Mergers, Acquisitions and Disposals - 20 marks
• Regulations, Governance and Ethics - 20 marks
Because this will be the first sitting of the newly launched CFQ exams, there will be no opportunity for you to access past examination papers or specimen questions to aid with your revision. Those who would appreciate the support of an established programme provider may study with ICAEW and CISI accredited BPP Learning who offer the course for fees from £1,200.