Recent News - Merger Done Right

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Oct 13

Shirley Roberson

Merger Done Right

Posted by Shirley Roberson

More often than not, when we see merger updates in the news it is because they have failed - sometimes in epic proportion (think: AOL and Time Warner; Sears and K-Mart). A frequently cited reason for these fails is “culture clash” between the joined entities.

But, as this article notes, Zillow’s successful acquisition of Trulia has defied the odds and is being met with very beneficial results.  Although the businesses complemented each other and the acquisition made sense on paper, success wasn’t guaranteed. I’m not surprised by the result. I had the opportunity to see Spencer Rascoff, Zillow’s CEO, speak at the Geekwire Summit earlier this month. His fireside chat focused on Zillow’s culture and how the company purposefully invests in maintaining a culture of hiring people smarter than yourself and strong internal succession planning. I imagine that cultivating a healthy culture helped Zillow avoid many of the “clash” pitfalls and allowed the participants to focus on the main goal – successful business expansion.