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Keeping Innovation in the Mix after the Merger

July 14, 2014

​Fenwick & West corporate partner Ted Wang was quoted by Inc. magazine in an article on steps companies can take to preserve the creative culture—and hence the value, in many cases—of an acquired entity.

The essential question to ask when planning acquisition actions, according to Wang, is: "Are you looking for another piece of software in your channel or do you want a standalone business that can leverage or partner with existing assets?"

"There are some deals where the purpose is to acquire a company as a standalone and help it thrive under a larger umbrella," he said, noting that in such cases, post-merger integration may be deliberately minimized.

Keeping key personnel in place may be the most important element in maintaining the innovative culture that made a target company attractive, Wang told Inc., and the terms agreed upon in a deal can significantly influence those employees.

"It is very common to have part of the acquisition price paid in some form of retention, where critical employees must stay to earn it," he said.

The full article is available through the Inc. website.