Rock the Boat: Leveraging a Downturn to Engage in M&A


Question: What do Diageo, IBM, Bank of America and Johnson & Johnson have in common? Answer: Each company entered into or completed a successful acquisition that served its stakeholders and bottom lines well in the years that followed, and each did so during a down economy. It may seem counterintuitive, but these success stories are just a few examples of the advantages of using economic downturns to merge with or acquire another organization. The high-profile IBM-Sun Microsystems deal that fell apart last week aside, companies of all sizes can take this opportunity to take risks and grow as a result while their peers and competitors struggle alongside everyone else. That said, good or bad economy, M&A deals are rife with communications challenges, but effective PR can turn even the most tenuous deal into a resounding success.

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