Deals are disappointing.


While an overwhelming majority of companies with mergers and acquisitions (M&A) departments are actively pursuing deals, SI percent of the respondents to Crowe Horwath LLP's "Critical Pillars for M&A Success" survey admitted falling somewhat or significantly short of their desired rate of return on completed transactions.

The survey, which incorporated responses from 80 C-suite and corporate development executives, showed M&A has become routine for many companies, with 63 percent of the respondents saying their companies have pursued three or more deals in the past two years. Yet the respondents admitted to many reservations about their companies' deal-making prowess:

* Only 45 percent expressed a belief their companies do a very good job of managing their deal pipeline.

* Fewer than a third of the re-spondents said their companies clearly define a strategic plan to identify M&A opportunities.

* Only 37 percent said their companies have proper governance to prevent the C-suite from unduly influencing whether to consummate a transaction.

* Just 47 percent said their companies maintain clarity and focus throughout the deal process.

* Only 12 percent said they are very efficient at executing M&A deals.

* A mere 9 percent of the respondents said they are very effective at capturing synergies targeted at the start of the transaction process.

* Nearly a quarter said their companies do a poor or very poor job of communicating about, and achieving alignment with, the structure of a combined organization.

"M&A failure' results when a deal fails to meet the goals identified prior to the transaction," said Marc Shaffer, managing partner of financial advisory services for Crowe "Our study attempts to peel back the...

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