The implicit understanding among Alliance members is that, in exchange for their willingness to share their own experience and knowledge, they gain access to the extraordinary collective wisdom of the Alliance community of CEOs. Our members do amazing things and we've been collecting some of their "lessons learned" in Case Studies that preserve and highlight the wealth of knowledge in our membership. We also interview our members from time to time on matters of interest, and you'll find their thoughts here as well.
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Stories of company sales are riddled with strife. The staff that is asked to weather the transition often experiences wage cuts, department rollbacks and painful non-alignment among competing business units. Alyson Watson, former President of RMC Water and Environment, survived to tell the tale of her company’s acquisition. Better yet, the story is one of harmonious success, a triumph that began with letting go of control.
Marco Marini and Bart Schaefer, both executives in the email marketing industry, were fellow Alliance group members for years, and built a solid rapport of delivering straightforward feedback and comparing notes on their industry. But, when Bart decided it might be time to sell his company, Marco had much more to offer him than his opinion.
A maturing industry requires its leaders to act differently. As industry players grow larger to manage compliance burdens and to gain access to capital, leadership styles that worked in the past can become dysfunctional. For midsized mortgage businesses to continue growing, they will need to upgrade their leadership teams through coaching, mentoring, and recruitment. Learn how Alliance member, Craig Sardella of Comstock Mortgage grew its volume to $750 million during a downturn in the industry, even while competition continued to be a drag on growth and profitability.
Today’s CFO faces more challenges than ever. Staying ahead of vital business trends is one of those challenges. Hear from a panel of Ernst & Young professionals and CFOs, include Alliance member, Rick Martig, as they discuss what every CFO needs to know about digital.
Growing through acquisition is an enticing prospect for many mid-market companies, but many deals fail to reach their potential. In this article, several Alliance members and alumni illustrate how to "prepare the soil" for M&A success by building the proper bandwidth to handle due diligence and integration.
CEOs underinvest in preparing themselves and their firms for an exit, and in building business acumen for exiting. When the event is upon us, many seek to turn it over to investment bankers, and while they play a critical part in many exits, there is much that they cannot do, or where their incentives are not perfectly aligned with the seller.
Mid-market firms are big enough to make sizable acquisitions but are often not big enough to have dedicated acquisition teams or the management bandwidth to integrate a newly acquired firm. One disastrous acquisition can push a mid-market company into bankruptcy court.
A survey was sent to over 300 Alliance of Chief Executives members in the greater Bay Area between January 13th and January 22nd, 2012. Read about the focus of this research - to better understand how mid-market companies can improve the likelihood and magnitude of acquisition success.
Two companies merge to gain economies of scale and to create an industry leader. But not so with Oclaro (NASDAQ: OCLR), formed when CEO Alain Couder merged $300M Bookham (NASDAQ:BKHM) with $200M Avanex (NASDAQ: AVNX) in April of 2009. Today, the combined company's stock price is up nearly four times from April of last year.
Imagine that your company is seeking to merge or be acquired only to discover that the "change in control" provisions in your compensation agreements are scaring away potential suitors. Internal inconsistencies within your agreements (employment agreements, change in control agreements, severance plans, equity incentive plans, supplemental executive retirement plans, etc.) create substantial financial liabilities that you may not uncover until it is too late. Such unanticipated consequences can adversely impact or kill your deal.
The process of making good decisions is critical. Some firms/teams are bad at decision making, and the results can be ugly. Four decision making illnesses are discussed along with some suggestions about improvement.