Many businesses struggle to collect enough meaningful data to improve their operations, or to sufficiently analyze the data they already have. Search funds are formed to find these arbitrage opportunities.
They bet that they better understand the key performance metrics of a business than its current owners. This might be as simple as sitting next to machines with a stopwatch to measure throughput times or aggregating data into a searchable database. When successful, this allows the new owners to make targeted adjustments and reap the benefits.
Businesses need to figure out how to harness data to make educated decisions or some else will. It needs to be designed into their process. They have to trust their data, even when it indicates that they need to upgrade equipment / invest in automation, better train their workers, or exit a line of business.