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Insight from Peritius
Go beyond strategy. Deliver results with Peritius.
July 2012

Dear Colleague:

I have been involved with many mergers and acquisitions during my career. They bring their challenges. As consultants, our involvement is from an integration and organizational change management perspective. We know first-hand the importance of strategy, synergy and integration to the overall success of merger and acquisition initiatives.

This month Richard Lee, Peritius CFO, looks at this from a different angle. Read his article to hear why these same success factors are important from a CFO's perspective.

 

Best regards,

 

Alisa Speese
Chief Innovation Officer
Peritius Consulting, Inc.

Peritius consultants like to stay on top of the trends impacting our clients and business partners. Here are some recent articles of interest to our team:

Culture, Talent Are Top Needs for Innovation, Say CFOs

10 Habits of Remarkably Charismatic People

The Future of Boards


The Role of the CFO in Mergers and Acquisitions

By Richard Lee
Chief Financial Officer

 

Richard Lee: The Role of the CFO in Mergers and Acquisitions What makes the integration of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) difficult is that not every deal is done by the same rules, and no one strategy fits every company. One thing is for sure: facilitating a transaction or liquidity event is as much art as science, and many industry professionals would argue that the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) must play three essential roles for the deal to work.

  • Strategist - in addition to the CEO and other key executives, CFO must wear the hat of a strategist during the process. This goes beyond merely looking at the numbers and deciding whether or not the multiples on the table make sense. Does the acquisition or divestiture fit long-term corporate strategy and vision? What are the pitfalls that everyone is overlooking? Companies without COOs often have CFOs who translate numbers into implementable action items, and this is a logical extension of such responsibility.
  • Synergist - positive synergies do not just appear out of thin air. If they are there, they must be fostered in order to reap the rewards. Same with negative synergy. If not addressed or extinguished right away it will grow like a wildfire until the entire deal is consumed. The CFO must manage the synergies, both positive and negative. What are the drivers? Do we have the right people with right incentives to accentuate the strengths while addressing the weaknesses?
  • Richard Lee: The Role of the CFO in Mergers and Acquisitions Integrator - by this, I mean wearing the hat of "Chief Implementation Officer." This is where CFOs' PM skills (by nature, we are type A, detail-oriented professionals) come in handy, and he / she must roll up the sleeves and get their hands dirty. Run or participate in meetings; "implement, monitor, assess, and adjust" as my former boss used to tell me. I've seen brilliant deals fail to live up to their billings due to poor integration efforts. CFOs must take charge.

Does this mean other executives are "chopped liver" in the process? Absolutely not; everyone from the junior analyst to the CEO plays a critical role in the process of being proactive and identifying opportunities.

This is just one perspective from a key position. One thing for sure (as mentioned twice in this post) - if the synergies are not achieved, the CFO is on the firing line for explanations, so he / she might as well dive in head first and take control.


About Peritius

Peritius Consulting is a management consulting firm that helps its clients execute their strategic plans. For over 23 years, Peritius has helped its clients navigate from vision to reality, allowing them to realize their strategic ROI. Please contact us to learn more about how we can help you deliver strategy in the most effective, cost-efficient manner.

www.peritius.com   |    info@peritius.com

 

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