Explore BrainMass

Many corporate acquisitions result in losses to the acquiring firms' stockholders

Many corporate acquisitions result in losses to the acquiring firms' stockholders. Accordingly, why do firms purchase other corporations? Are they simply paying too much for the acquired corporation? A co-worker asks your opinion. Specifically state the reasons for your argument.

Solution Preview

Why acquisitions?

For example, if Company A with revenues of $50 million Acquires Company SA with revenues of $10 million, the Newco mathematically would have revenues of $60 million. The anticipated performance of a well thought out strategic purchase might result in combined revenue for Newco of $100 million within a 1 to 2 year period. A second category of strategic acquisition would focus on an improvement of the profit margins of Newco.

Let's use two companies that are recognized as among the best at making successful acquisitions, General Electric and Cisco Systems. As their stockholders will happily tell you, these companies have been star performers in growing shareholder value. General Electric is a giant conglomerate with business lines such as GE Capital, GE Plastics, GE Power Systems, GE Medical, and several others. Cisco Systems could be categorized as a high tech growth company primarily focusing on voice and data communications hardware, software, and services.

The first rule of strategic acquisition we learn from these two prolific and successful companies is that they do it on purpose. They have a well thought out defined approach. To quote GE, "We are allocating capital to businesses that can increase growth with higher returns, businesses requiring human capital as opposed to physical capital. We are disciplined and integrators and we grow the businesses we acquire. Over the past 10 years Cisco Systems has acquired 81 companies. If you track their stock price over the same period, it is up a remarkable 1300% over that same period. GE, starting with a much larger base, still outperformed the S&P 500 index over the same period 3 to 1.

If you study the acquisitions of these two companies as well as good middle market growth through acquisition companies, you find some common strategic themes. The core principal that runs through almost every example is INTEGRATION. With the exception of establishing the original platform, GE expanding from their original roots and establishing a presence in plastics, for example, all of these acquisitions focus on integration.

An example that I use to summarize strategic acquisitions for Cisco Systems is ...

Solution Summary

In a 1379 word solution, the response presents seven reasons why a company might acquire another, even with losses.