1/ Based on business strategy rather than financial strategy The acquirer must have a plan for how they can meaningfully improve the business being acquired.
2/ Based on what the acquirer contributes to the acquired org The acquire should have capabilities (e.g people, process or technology) that can de deployed in this new context to generate value.
3/ Must share a common means of unity Companies must exhibit similar cultures or at least "cultural affinity". Furthermore the two businesses should have in common either markets or technology.
4/ The acquirer must respect the business, products, and customers of the acquired company If the acquiring business lacks respect of the above it will become clear very quickly that the acquisition was likely based on financial strategy rather than business strategy.
5/ The acquirer must be prepared to provide top management to the acquired business within a fairly short period, a year at most Executive leaders are used to leading and calling the shots. Very few will want to remain as "Divisional Managers" or change their "child".
6/ Must rapidly create visible opportunities for advancement for both the people in the acquiring business and people in the acquired business Promote across party lines to breed a culture of togetherness and shared opportunity for both camps eliminating "us" and "them"
There we are, 6 rules for successful acquisitions. I hope these are useful to engineering managers going through an acquisition or involved in planning one. I would love to hear your acquisition stories. How many rules did you observe being followed or ignored?
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