Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Mergers & Acquisitions

“Joi, when you are on your grind, you have to humble yourself and throw your pride out of the window.” That was a blurb from an unforgettable conversation with a great friend. His name you ask? Well, we will just call him Mr. N.

“You need to treat everything and everyone like a business,” he said. I set there, comfortably snuggled in a booth at Geisha restaurant (located on 61st street), sipping green tea, eating an appetizer, and speechless as hell. I felt the tears piling up in my pupils. Even so, I ate my sensitivity and became engulfed in one of the most difficult but emotional meetings that I’ve had with Mr. N.

Mr. N had a seriousness about him and his words commanded my attention. After that evening, I reflected on our discussion. I made a promise to myself (and Mr. N) that I would never forget this moment. By dessert, I decided that I would cherish his words and put them to action.

A few months later, I found myself covering the same topic with another friend. I guess that you want to know his name as well? Again, we will refer to him as Mr.C for privacy and respect issues. He proceeded to say, “If you think about it, we all handle people (meaning the opposite sex) like business. It’s all about mergers and acquisitions. Will we be able to join forces and make it happen? Or will the other involved party try to buy you out to leave the deal?” Interesting. Mergers and Acquisitions. Mr. N and Mr. C definitely hit the nail on the head. I just smiled, on the other end of the phone, in agreement with him.

I can remember when I anxiously called Mr. N about a gorgeous fur coat that I had to take home. I stated my case aggressively. Mr. N’s position was, “What’s in it for me?” We went back and fourth for 15 minutes or more, setting the guidelines and negotiations. Instantly, a deal had been made. “You are a businessman in every sense,” I said to Mr. N before hanging up with him. To say the least, I closed the deal and got my fabulous fur! Besides, It’s not important how I got the coat. The key lesson from this story is that Mr. N and I approached this personal matter just like a business opportunity.

In several situations, it’s about measuring whether this person will be an asset or liability to your company (a.k.a your life and social well-being). Are you willing to invest time and/or money in his/her stock? You have to determine if there will be a return on the stock. Moreover, you may need to evaluate if the return will be minimal or great.

Nevertheless, when a questionable prospect stares me in the face, be it a merger and/or acquisition; I will replay those two significant conversations via Mr. N and Mr. C in my thoughts.

In conclusion, if you find that the merger and/or acquisition will not be of benefit, then leave your options open. Believe me, there are plenty of deals to be made, and they will find you.
I am going to end this post by quoting a few words that a tenacious woman once told me. When you’re certain that the merger and acquisition just does not fit your needs; then you can politely say, “I think that we are moving in different directions.” Hopefully, they will not be offended, because when you get down to it…it’s just business.

1 comment:

  1. I guess it just depends on what you want. A good friend of mine once said that I should "never do anything that I couldn't live with." I, like you, took those words to heart. If a fur coat is important to you, then you may be willing to make a deal to get it. However, at the end of the day, it's important that you can live with the deal.

    One thing most people don't understand about bsiness is that the structure of the deal is more inportant than the deal itself. Two people can both offer to pay $1 million dollars for a given company, but one deal might be financed, while the other is cash. Most sellers would prefer the latter, but sometime the former can be a better deal if the interest rate is good and the person is likely to be a good risk.

    In all mergeres and acquisitions, be sure to always evaluate risk. Once you've done this you will realize that some deals are not worth making.

    That's my 2.5 cents...