In the midst of these unprecedented times, many companies are looking to mergers and acquisitions to realize new growth opportunities and diversify; however, before heading down this road, one question needs to be asked: is it a marriage built to last or is it doomed from the start? A recent paper, which examined 1,365 M&A deals occurring between 1983 and 2010, found that 46% eventually resulted in divestment or “divorce”. Moreover, 77% of these corporate divorces stemmed from M&A failures. The authors identify post-acquisition industry shocks and cultural dissimilarities as the primary causes behind corporate divorce, but suggest that … Continue Reading
Despite a general environment of uncertainty, 2018 was quite active in the cross-border M&A arena. However, observers expect a global drop for this year, especially for the mega-deals (i.e. transactions with deal values exceeding $10 billion) amid uncertainty over Brexit and the threat of globe trade wars.
Accordingly, acquirers are increasingly focusing on domestic deals rather than cross-border opportunities, and as corporate leadership remains bullish towards cross-border M&A, industry experts have suggested placing a greater emphasis on managing post-transaction integration issues.
Why? Because poor post-merger integration can hamper value creation. A mismatch of cultural fit, particularly magnified in a cross-border … Continue Reading
In today’s M&A market, dealmakers are increasingly under pressure – resulting from increased disruption, industry convergence, technological change and the need to shift to new business models to stay competitive – to maximize and deliver value from each deal they do. One would think, therefore, that value creation would be a priority for dealmakers. However, a recent report by PwC (prepared in conjunction with Mergermarket and Cass Business School) shows that this may not be the case.
Key findings from the report include:
- Many acquisitions and divestments do not maximize value – even when some dealmakers think they do.
In recent years, we have seen more acquisitions of start-ups by big corporations in the tech industry, healthcare, retail, fashion, beauty, food, and transportation. The benefits of M&A transactions in these sectors has been more widely recognized. For instance, for a start-up, partnering with a large corporation provides broader market access, deeper industry knowledge and accelerated brand development opportunities. From the perspective of the corporation, it means access to growing markets, new technologies, and tapping into niche skills, talents and entrepreneurial and agile culture.
2018 promises to be a year in which corporate culture will likely become an even more important focal point for investors and activists.
There’s no denying that social media has drastically altered the dynamic for public companies. Today, shareholders are increasingly calling upon corporations to take public stances on various social (and sometimes political) issues, some of which may be wholly unrelated to the corporation’s purpose. In a climate where shareholders are increasingly judging corporations based on non-traditional criteria, public companies can no longer spout platitudes about corporate governance and social values without risking being singled out. More than ever, … Continue Reading
In a recent blog post, we explored the reasons why a sizable number of M&A deals fail to complete every year. As discussed in that post, the closing of an M&A deal does not necessarily announce the success of a transaction. In fact, as high as 60% of M&A deals fail to deliver value even after a victorious closing, as an A.T. Kearney study shows. The Harvard Business Review reports that the failure rate of an M&A deal falls in the range of 70 – 90%.
Extensive research has been conducted to locate the elements that are fatal to … Continue Reading
In any M&A transaction, there are a variety of risks that are associated with human capital. Mercer has recently released a report, People Risks in M&A Transactions (the Report), based on a survey of M&A professionals. It provides an analysis of approximately 450 M&A transactions, and interviews corporate and private equity clients, investment bankers, and M&A advisors. The Report identifies a number of human capital risks that are of concern to those in the M&A sphere.
The top five issues relating to human capital identified by participants surveyed were:
- Employee retention: Retaining employees after a deal has taken
Recent discussions on M&A deal activity debate whether mergers and acquisitions fail to meet financial projections or return on shareholder value. Most often, failures are chalked up to ‘cultural clashes’, implying that the two merging entities ‘just don’t fit’. Given the abundance of resources that get allocated towards the execution of a merger or acquisition, one would think that significant resources would be allocated to integration. In practice, this is far from the case. The merger of cultures seems to be an issue that rarely gets enough attention by deal participants in the lead-up to a merger or post-closing.
In … Continue Reading