Mergers in Professional Services

As professional services firms announce mergers and many more firms are holding talks. How to you ensure you are ready and can manage the best outcome for your team?

Merger and acquisition (M&A) activity between professional services firms, specifically accounting and legal firms appears set to accelerate. Key drivers for a merger usually include practice owners seeking to adapt to the fall-out from Covid 19, industry changes, support clients growing needs especially international, access to enhanced skills, building credibility and manage succession planning.

Understanding and deciding to acquire or merge with another firm is one of the most crucial decisions you and your partners will ever make. That’s why you need the advice of someone who knows the industry, how to make the best of the opportunity, the process, what the best practices are and what the potential pitfalls are and how to ensure to maximise the new larger firm at the end of the process.

Post-merger or acquisition, most leaders are focused on the quantifiable steps of the integration such as migration onto new technology platforms, managing duplicate costs and streamlining efficiencies. While that’s important, its vital to ensure you are managing the communication strategy for optimal results and that process starts long before ink dries on contracts. It’s critical to think about what’s the best option for clients to ensure you retain them and grow in the new entity.

It can be challenging and unsuccessful acquisitions can create significant reputational and operational headache and leave a long term stain.

Key considerations are:

  • Defining the firm’s goals and expectations

  • Getting ready for market

  • Targeting the market and beginning the search

  • Reviewing potential practices, portfolios and skills

  • Formulating an offer

  • Negotiating and closing the deal

  • Planning for post-merger communications, operations and cultural integration

If you are interested in exploring a merger discussion, please contact me in absolute confidence.