Making an acquisition is a high risk activity for any business. It signals a period of major change in both the parent business and the acquired Company that will stretch management and offer competitors a chance to steal market share.
So how can a business protect the value of its acquisition and exploit the synergies best?
- It is vital to set up a Deal Implementation Team (DIT) that operates in parallel to the negotiation team well in advance of deal day, soon after Heads of terms are agreed.
- The most effective DITs involve senior staff from the acquired company working with the acquirer management before the deal actually takes place.
- Appoint a dedicated Integration leader experienced in Integrations who can anticipate, prevent and resolve problems without the distraction of also having another day job.
- Recognise the limitations of due diligence and be prepared to change plans and goals as new information comes to light.
- Make risk control and communication integral to all implementation activities. Ensure the Integration Leader works closely with top management so you can control risk and deal with issues fast.
- Make the announcement day a major focus and tailor an engagement programme for each stakeholder group. -First Impressions Count.
- Restate trading KPI’s of the target Company quickly so they count things in the same way as the Acquirer to give you effective trading control faster.
- Finally, recognise that Integration will take many months and impact on resources available for other strategic initiatives.