We are developing a list of potential acquisition targets in our industry. We have existing alliance or joint venture agreements with some of these companies. We can get to the fuzzy front end to open the discussion, but then our conversations stall because they all want a Letter of Intent (LOI). Since we are simply shopping for one acquisition target among many we don't have enough answers to give them a LOI. After some research it seems like an Indication of Interest (IOI) is a better tool for our needs. We would like to understand how an Indication of Interest fits in the negotiation process. It would also be useful to understand what an IOI should cover? What are the main differences with an LOI?