Reply To: M&A involving startups


Craig Hasler

Hi Terry,

Thanks for the prompt.

While there are many great points above related to post-merger integration and the specific role/responsibilities of the founder(s) moving forward once the startup is absorbed into the larger company (acquirer), I think the success of the transaction hinges on the type of technology, solution, or service being acquired. For example, if the technology is highly sophisticated or complex (and possibly has plans for future iterations or extensions), then it may make sense to keep the founders (or most competent product/solution engineers) locked up for a longer period of time to ensure that the “know-how” and expertise can properly be absorbed into the acquirers’ business. Generally, acquirers will like to see founders kept on board for 1-2 years following deal closure, but ultimately this is negotiated. It also must be said that if the founders leave the acquired business (startup) post-integration, there is a greater likelihood that employees from the acquired company may also leave in the future.

Thanks for sharing!


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