Merger Acquisition Integration Best Practices

A well-planned integration process for mergers and acquisitions can help you increase the value of your deal. This is a complex process that requires the proper mix of organizational, operational, finance, change-management and cultural expertise to be successful. When you’re doing it right, you will yield up to 12 percent more dividends to shareholders than those who do not.

The acquiring company must begin to think about integration as early as possible during the negotiations and due diligence phases. A thorough evaluation of the target culture can guide your strategy for due diligence, top-management meetings and initial integration plans. In a healthcare acquisition for instance, managers utilized the initial insights they gained into the culture of the target to make strategic decisions concerning synergies to be evaluated, and creating an integration team structure. They also restricted the number of employees who were in attendance at initial meetings, and also made other tactical decisions, like limiting the number of functional areas involved.

We see a structured approach to capturing synergies from large mergers that have been successful. This means putting line managers in charge of their goals and requiring them to be accountable for their results. It also means integrating synergies into leaders’ annual operating plans and budgets.

It is essential to have a team of management members that are integrated during the post-close integration, which could take up to two years. The team should have the authority to act swiftly and access to all relevant information.

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