Peter N. Townshend was quoted on April 24 by Reuters in an article discussing the trend of accelerated negotiations by private equity firms in the mergers and acquisitions market. In an effort to try and beat opponents in the auction process, private equity bidders are giving high offers and securing the deal well before the bidding deadlines. "The question of whether to take an early bid or go through a complete auction is really a game of chicken for both sides," said Mr. Townshend. "If you go through the whole auction, bidders run the risk that others will outbid them. Meanwhile, if the target completes the whole process and the other offers don't turn out as high as they or Wall Street had expected, the company runs the risk that the early, high bid could disappear," Mr. Townshend added.