Most people have heard of the financial strategy known as “mergers and acquisitions”, or M&As. However, few people have taken the time out to truly learn more about company mergers, and for good reason. After all, unless you are directly affected by an M&A, you don’t really have any reason to get involved in it. In reality, however, almost everybody who works will be affected by at least one at some point during their lifetime. While this is something you have no control over, knowing about some of history’s most important M&As could be beneficial to you.
Learn More about Company Mergers Throughout History
Mallesons and Stephen Jaques Stone James (SJSJ) merged in 1987, calling themselves “Mallesons Stephen Jaques” instead. When this happened, SJSJ was actually one of the biggest legal companies in Sidney, Australia, with 251 lawyers and 79 partners. Mallesons, meanwhile, was one of the biggest legal companies in Melbourne, with 83 lawyers and 37 partners. As telecommunications started to advance, both firms started to see that a merger would be beneficial for both companies. They were similar companies in terms of culture, and even shared some of the same clients. By merging, they would be better able to serve a wider audience, including abroad.
Another very famous merger is that of the European University Association. This was actually, at first, the Confederation of European Union Rectors’ Conferences and the Association of European Universities. This happened on March 31, 2001 in Salamanca, Spain. The merger was made to create just one organization that would represent and serve the entire European university community, giving it a more powerful presence and a stronger voice.
Then, in September 1962, Thrif Discount Center, part of Rite Aid, was opened in Scranton, PA. As soon as it opened, the company experienced tremendous growth as they acquired (not merged with!) one company after another, opening many other stores and even being present in five different states just three years after opening. In 1968, it changed its name to Rite Aid Corporation, which is when it also joined the Stock Exchange. Their strategy of acquisitions continued and, in 1995, they got their hands of Perry Drug Stores, the largest acquisition yet.
Another example acquisition example is that of Tower Federal Savings Bank of South Bend in Indiana. This happened in 1988. The bank took over the Loan Association of Kalamazoo and the First Federal Savings one year later. Then, in 19991, the Ohio market opened its doors to Standard Federal, who acquired United Home Federal Savings and Loan Association of Toledo very quickly thereafter.
There is a big different between mergers and acquisitions, as the example above describe. In a merger, companies come together to become a bigger, better one. In acquisitions, one company literally takes over the other. And, with the attention span of the average human being now being incredibly short, most people don’t even remember that the companies that were acquired even ever existed at all.