Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) are strategic growth tools used by organizations aiming for market dominance and sustainable growth in shareholder wealth. While M&A sound impressive they involve many complexities, conundrums and risks (Angwin, 2001; Algama, 2020) requiring a great deal of thinking, effort and resources to get right. Despite the commonality of M&A in developed as well as emerging markets a good majority of them fail (Hitt, 2012) and there doesn’t seem to be a thorough understanding of why they fail (Cartwright and Schoenberg, 2006).
This article is a brief review of several noteworthy M&A executed in Sri Lanka in the recent history between Dialog Axiata & Wow.lk, Dialog Axiata & H-One, Mobitel & E-Channeling, Hutch Lanka & Etisalat Sri Lanka, ACL Cables & Kelani Cables, Gamma Pizzakraft & Keells Restaurants (Pizza Hut operation in Sri Lanka), Softlogic Holdings & Odel/Cotton Collection, SS Equity Holdings & RIL Property PLC (BreadTalk operation in Sri Lanka). The article attempts to understand the likely business objectives behind these strategic moves and if the expected results have materialized.
Empirical evidence suggests that a vast majority of M&A fail to deliver the expected results. It is important that business managers evaluate the pros and cons of the M&A route carefully, formulate well defined goals & strong integration plans should they wish to proceed.
The analysis was carried out based on already published data using company press releases, information from their websites, other online press articles, existing literature on mergers & acquisitions and authors experience/involvement in two of the cases being discussed and insights from industry insiders.