M&A: Transitioning Through a Drawn Out Acquisition
There are many challenges when it comes to companies going through acquisitions. In particular when it comes to reporting out to shareholders and how closely all involved need to monitor expenses. A prime example came with the Willis Group Holdings’ 2008 acquisition of Hib, Rogal & Hobbs (HRH). Willis is looking for an upswing in the second half of 2012 as they move away from the HRH internal accounting scandal and integration issues as a result of the acquisition.
Willis is a good competitor in their market. I have been working with companies transitioning through mergers and acquisitions – below are some tips I have picked up along the way:
- It is extremely hard to mold the culture of an acquired company into your culture
- Competition for mid-market property and casualty accounts is fierce
- Customers, rightly, expect more expertise and service. The competitive market has provided buyers with more service with no increase in broker/agent compensation.
- Service models are the key to retaining existing accounts and growing the business by winning new customers
- It has been challenging to serve two masters – the Customer and Wall Street