What makes for a successful merger? Peter Scott

What makes for a successful merger? Peter Scott

What makes for a successful merger? Peter Scott Peter Scott consulting www.peterscottconsult.co.uk Putting mergers into context

The economy Legal Services Act implications Client needs are changing Greater regulation and compliance PI insurers attitudes Technology Globalisation A need to become more competitive A greater need for resource

PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING The essentials to success

Planning and negotiating mergers Dealing with potential deal breakers Financial considerations Management and implementation issues PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Planning and negotiating mergers

Why merge? PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Merge for the right reasons

consolidation is not a strategy it is a means to an end to gain competitive advantage consolidation can help build RESOURCE to enable a firm to provide its clients with what they want Firms need to ask themselves: Will we be able to achieve our objectives on our own If not, then consolidation may need to be considered PETER SCOTT CONSULTING A Vision

To build a law firm which can begin to compete with larger, more developed firms for better quality, higher value work leading to greater competitiveness and profitability PETER SCOTT CONSULTING The scale of a new firm may help to enable the new firm to be developed at an acceptable economic cost to each constituent firm - which the individual firms could not on their own provide

PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Resource to enable the new firm to Attract and retain the best talent PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Resource to enable the new firm to Provide clients with the depth and breadth of expertise they

now require, where and when they need it PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Resource to enable the new firm to Build the quality management which will be required to successfully compete in the future PETER SCOTT CONSULTING

Resource to enable the new firm to Provide the necessary infrastructure to underpin the effective provision of high quality professional services demanded by clients PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Developing the vision Before you approach your target

Look beyond what each firm now represents and consider what the two firms together could build To excite and enthuse both sets of partners The leaders of both firms need to be ad idem on the vision

PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Ensure CULTURES are compatible Compatible not necessarily the same the laws of magnetism!

Are we like them? Do we have the same work ethos? Can we see ourselves working well together? Do we like them? If not walk away PETER

SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Develop a strong business case Merger is not a strategy it is a means to an end Develop a tested business case

- will it be good for clients? - will it have the wow factor? Will merger help you win more and better quality work from existing clients and new work from potential clients, that neither legacy firm could hope to win individually? PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Develop a strong financial case

A merger - with a strong business case - if well implemented - should achieve greater profitability But inevitable disruption of merger will mean even greater financial management is required

Carry out a financial evaluation covering first [2] years based on realistic and prudent assumptions NB do not believe your own hype! PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Dealing with potential deal

breakers PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Potential deal breakers

Partners Name Goodwill Financial performance Profit sharing Management positions Successor practice rules Others?

PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Partners How many of your equity partners are you going to bring into the merged firm? PETER SCOTT

CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Partners Managing the - insecurities - ambitions of partners PETER SCOTT CONSULTING

PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Name The goodwill of your firm is likely to reside in the abilities and reputation of your partners as a group, rather than in your firms name. PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER

SCOTT CONSULTING Goodwill Someone will most likely have to bear the pain of writing off goodwill as the price of achieving the merger PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING

Profit sharing An opportunity to make a new start Can reflect different cultures May need a transition to a different system PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Management positions Managing the ambitions of partners

The leaders of each need to be ad idem PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Do your due diligence! A merger flowchart PETER

SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING The merger process does not end on signing the agreement PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING

Management and implementation The hard work begins once the merger agreement is signed! Management and implementation are key to success PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING

Management and implementation Do we have a MANAGEMENT TEAM capable of successfully taking forward our new firm to achieve our vision? Do we have the required skills? Do we have the leadership required? PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING

Management and implementation Assemble the best possible TEAMS to manage integration of the two firms and longer term management: - to manage groups / offices / projects - to manage - finance - risk and compliance - HR - marketing - IT - facilities - other functions

PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Management and implementation Learning from each other How can we incorporate the best of our respective firms into the new firm? How are we going to manage performance in the new firm? How are we going to change things?

PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING The merger process needs to be managed PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Communicate, communicate, communicate Internally

- What will it mean for me? Externally - Will the market place give our merger the thumbs up? Ideally, use external professional advice PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Mergers can deliver their promises if

those involved never lose sight of the real objective to build a more competitive and profitable firm PETER SCOTT CONSULTING Any questions? PETER SCOTT CONSULTING PETER SCOTT CONSULTING

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