Many deals fail to meet their stated financial targets, often because they fail to capture potential synergies quickly and completely. Sometimes this is due to poor execution capability, a lack of integration resources, or missing implementation plans to guide the synergy teams. Other times, it is purely a lack of focus on the synergy realization efforts as associates’ day-to-day jobs get in the way of synergy capture initiatives. In many cases, companies wait too long to perform their analyses, develop plans and execute quickly after close. Timing is critical, because the value of a synergy opportunity erodes as each day passes, and it is impossible to make up for lost time.

There is often a reluctance to engage with the target before close to fully identify and plan how it will realize the full value of the opportunities. Many are understandably cautious and decide to wait, lest they set themselves up for Hart-Scott-Rodino violations. While those concerns are valid, a well-conceived and executed clean-room approach can set the stage for aggressive and immediate action post-close.

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