“We have a strong vision and a clear plan for growing the company in the future,” Sarah, the CEO, told me with complete confidence during a recent strategy session. Her CFO disagreed: “We have no vision.” Various members of her executive team shared similar sentiments privately with my team and me. Many expressed anxiety; they […]

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Are you unusually busy? If you’re like most people the answer is yes! With the holiday season upon us, we are most of us inundated with commitments to work, family and friends. While it might be easy to get caught up in the bustle of the season, I recommend pausing to plan your growth path […]

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On our blog we often talk about the strategic rationale of acquisitions and the mechanics of planning and executing M&A. But after an acquisition is completed, how does M&A affect your company and what is it like to run a newly merged entity? As a third party M&A consultant I have learned best practices from […]

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Entrepreneurs rarely face the challenge of having too few ideas. In fact, like most entrepreneurs and business leaders you probably have a multitude of great ideas for growing your own business. Your biggest challenge may be figuring out which of all the alternatives is the best way to get from where you are now to […]

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With a 70% failure rate for acquisitions, it seems like the odds are against you from the beginning. Before you get scared off, however, let’s take a closer look at what that 70% means. The 70% failure rate is mainly based on large, publicly traded transactions because large transactions must be reported to the SEC, […]

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Are you looking for more ways to grow your business? Join our webinar with Mike Melo, President and CEO of ITA International, and learn how to use proactive, external growth to gain more business in any market. This webinar highlights ITA’s journey in developing a successful acquisition strategy and growth program using the Roadmap to […]

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John Dearing, Capstone’s managing director, presented a webinar on “How to Grow Your Business: Mergers and Acquisitions” on September 24 to a group of Bucknell students and alumni. Recognizing a rising interest in business growth and mergers and acquisitions, Bucknell Alumni Career Services invited John, a 1991 graduate, to share his expertise with his fellow […]

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Deferring to advisors during the M&A process can be detrimental to a company, as evidenced by the back and forth over Valeant Pharmaceuticals’ unsolicited $53 billion bid to acquire Allergan, the maker of Botox. The maneuvering over the past several months has become heated and off-track. Or as the Deal Professor column puts it: “Some […]

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“The danger with a mergers-and-acquisitions boom is that chief executives could allow themselves to get carried away by the thrill of the hunt, reducing their focus on internal investment projects that might have a better chance of bearing fruit,” says the New York Time’s Dealbook column. M&A activity has reached record highs and shows no […]

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Valeant Pharmaceuticals International is determined to grow through acquisitions.  Already actively pursuing a deal with Allergan, the maker of Botox, Valeant is reportedly seeking another contact lens company. CEO Michael Pearson said the company “will not be content to remain the No. 4 global player in the contact lens industry.” Valeant has a history of […]

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Here’s a quick thought about the Abbvie – Shire transaction that’s received so much recent attention because of the decision to reincorporate in Ireland once the deal is completed. Tax inversions are in vogue and a hot topic in the media. While the tax benefits of an inversion certainly are important in this acquisition, that’s […]

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Choosing the best option for growth. More often than not we find our clients have too many choices rather than too few. The difficulty lies in prioritizing options and determining which one is the best path forward. You may find yourself in a similar situation. With so many options how can you choose? Although it […]

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Pharmaceutical companies are using acquisition to become “pointy,” or more focused. Two recent examples are Bayer and Merck.  Bayer is focusing on over the counter medications by acquiring Merck’s consumer care business for $14.2 billion. On the other hand, Merck has become more streamlined through divestment. As I’ve mentioned before, although divestment means becoming smaller, […]

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Let’s admit it right away: This is a trick question. The correct answer is usually not the first answer. Here’s a classic example from the annals of corporate America: Union Pacific thought they were in the business of railroads—the commonsense answer. In reality, they were in the business of mass transportation. Had they recognized this early […]

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While G.E. may have Alstom’s support to acquire its energy business, the company has yet to gain the support of the French government. On Wednesday, G.E. chief executive Jeffery Immelt will visit French President François Holland for the second time to discuss G.E.’s $13.5 billion bid for Alstom’s energy business. If G.E. and the French […]

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Although imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, it doesn’t guarantee success. Assuming that the success of one business assures the same result for yours is a bit absurd because fundamentally the two companies are different, each with its own challenges, strengths, cultures and dynamics. You may think this concept is self-evident, but I’ve […]

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After battling for six months, Men’s Wearhouse and Jos. A. Bank finally came to an acquisition agreement on March 11 for $1.8 billion, forming the country’s fourth-largest men’s retailer. Men’s Wearhouse expects cost synergies of $100-150 million over the next three years to result from the deal, including the benefit of better purchasing power. While […]

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“The best opportunities are the ones we’re pursuing and not the other way around.” This comment in The Wall Street Journal from Smadar Levi, CFO of MyHeritage.com, is one I wholeheartedly agree with. She is quoted in an article about the growing number of startups seeking to be acquired. With fewer financing options available to […]

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Buying a company is not like buying a car where you walk away and never see the seller again. In many cases, it is more like buying an automobile with the seller thrown in. Especially for strategic acquirers, key employees from both buyer and seller are likely to work alongside one another in the newly […]

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Many leaders take a reactive rather than proactive approach when it comes to M&A. They often realize that their organic growth is stagnant and they’ve got some money they can leverage, so they decide to make an acquisition. What do they do? They go find for-sale companies or respond to those that have found them. […]

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