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BCG’s carve-out consultants guide companies through the complex carve-out process from end to end. Whether your goal is a trade sale, a spinoff, or an IPO, we help maximize transaction value and minimize business disruption—positioning the parent and new enterprises to thrive on day one and beyond.

What is a carve-out? From a pure process point of view, it involves separating a business unit, subsidiary, or line of business from its parent company. Carve-outs usually are launched ahead of, or in parallel with, a divestiture. The new entity can be offered to investors via an IPO, sold to an industry player or private equity firm, or spun off to existing investors to boost shareholder value.

In the right circumstances, it’s hard to top a carve-out for compelling strategic benefits. Carve-outs enable companies to capitalize on parts of their businesses that no longer fit strategic goals—while streamlining operations, paring costs, and enabling more-nimble responses to market shifts.

How BCG Enables Corporate Carve-Outs

BCG brings a distinctly holistic, end-to-end approach to these high-stakes transactions. Our strategic insight and deep industry expertise enable us to advise clients throughout the carve-out continuum.

We set you up for success with our clear focus on value, our deep expertise in strategy and business, our experience with complex carve-outs, and our structured approach, which pushes well beyond a purely mechanical separation exercise. We work shoulder-to-shoulder with you to boost the new entity’s value to shareholders and prospective buyers and ensure business continuity from day one.

Critically, we also reduce distractions, freeing you to focus on vital day-to-day operations. After all, even the most profitable carve-out is only as successful as the business you hold when the signatures are dry.

Containing Carve-Out Complexity

A carve-out transaction requires managing business, accounting, and legal issues simultaneously, often across functions, nations, and cultures. The result can be a torrent of micro-milestones and metrics that must be addressed and coordinated during a process that typically stretches 6 to 12 months.

To contain that complexity, BCG’s carve-out consultants help clients consider three factors: approach, timing, and setup.


1. Approach. Will the carve-out be a “lift and shift,” in which the unit is transferred substantially intact, or a bold redesign in which major operating changes are made?


Decide on priorities: “lift and shift” focuses on the speed and smoothness of the transition but may entail higher costs, initially, for the carved-out company. A bold redesign involves a lengthier and more difficult preparation period, with potentially lower costs.

2. Timing. What is the best date for independent, day-one operations?

3. Setup. How will the complex set of topics and stakeholders be managed?

Negotiate conflicting internal preferences and requirements.

Establish a robust project management office to lead, coordinate, and track.

Our Carve-Out Approach

We lead you through a three-step process that includes program setup, design and planning, and execution. We simultaneously advise on crucial project, risk, and change management issues that otherwise can undermine even the most precise financial plans.

IT is particularly thorny. IT systems often take longer to untangle than any other process and can stretch beyond the carve-out’s completion date. Together with BCG Platinion, we help anticipate, mitigate, and manage IT issues, including timelines, business requirements, security and privacy, historical data, and stranded costs.

Meet Our Carve-Out Consulting Leaders

Our carve-out consultants take a customized approach with clients to structure and run their operational carve-out.

Our Latest Insights on Carve-Outs

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