December 31, 2021 at 7:36 pm #52237
When I was new to the M&A world, I studied information from various experts in the M&A field. Since then and many M&As later, I haven’t seen ANY that follow a standard process. I think it is because of the human factor. What do you think?February 6, 2022 at 8:14 am #55782Yanxuan YangParticipant
I think every M&A transaction is a unique one. The “text book” pattern is described by M&A professionals based on the many M&A cases that they have experienced and hence serves as a very generic reference for a typical M&A process. Even transactions that are similar in many aspects will definitely have something different from the rest.February 9, 2022 at 7:11 pm #56150
Yanxuan, great insight. Thank you!February 19, 2022 at 9:09 am #56378Po HuangParticipant
I think it’s difficult for the M&A deals following a text book pattern as each deal is unique and there are a lot of factors to consider. I think following the text book pattern might not always be the most effective and efficient way to close the deal. I would refer the text book pattern as a reference but not necessary to follow each step. Thanks.February 22, 2022 at 4:21 am #56430Amanda BroosParticipant
I agree it would be difficult for M&A to follow a textbook approach, but in the the deals I’ve participated in, the level of experience and expertise is limited. For example, in the integrations I’ve participated in, the IMO lead and key team members don’t have specific credentials or training related to M&A. It surprises me given the stakes are so high, but typically its a well regarded internal leader at mid to senior level with good knowledge of the acquiring business and culture with some project management skill. I would think that formal training and credentials would be a requirement to lead such important work, or to be a decision maker in the purchase decision.February 24, 2022 at 10:22 pm #56510
Po Huang, Thank you for your insights. Yes, textbook models are a helpful resource but not a specific map.February 24, 2022 at 10:30 pm #56511
Amanda Broos, we have similar reactions when we see IMO leads and team members not experienced, skilled, or trained in M&A integrations. So often, senior leaders see the IMO leadership and team participation as an add-on training opportunity for employees and offer limited expert coaching or guidance. Most of the time, I’ve seen the IMO roles added onto the team member’s full-time business-as-usual responsibilities. Little wonder integrations can be extra challenging.February 26, 2022 at 9:06 pm #56566Amanda BroosParticipant
Karen, that’s been my reaction too. Similar observations to yours, and I totally agree. While I’m always supportive of providing training opportunities, its a very expensive learning experience… and can be painful for all involved!March 15, 2022 at 12:59 am #57463Michele LearnParticipant
I think that there are some fundamentals that can be used on each M&A project that will help it be successful (ie project management skills, good communication skills, due diligence etc…) However I have never seen a textbook integration due to the unique nature of each project. What I have seen is a striving for continuous improvement in getting better organized, more planning ahead of time, enhancement of communications etc.. although each one we do we get better, in each there are unique challenges to work out and new problems to solve.
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