Integrating an acquired company is in part about getting it to understand how the acquirer does things. But, for Jon Halpern and Pineapple Payments, it’s also about learning from the acquiree.
Halpern says there have been cross conversations between sales people at Pineapple and folks in sales organizations the company has brought on. They're learning about what each is doing in the market how they can get better and sell more.
The company’s president says Pineapple is not necessarily trying to change the way these sales organizations think and operate, but rather trying to help and add value where it can.
“We've blended that approach where we’ve taken some things that they're doing and some of the things that we think about doing and we try and put those together,” he says. “It's by no means perfect and we've got ways to continue to get better, but overall it's been a positive experience.”
Acquisition and integration, for Pineapple, are about the people.
“Just because a deal looks good or bad on paper doesn't mean that's going to be an actuality,” Halpern says. “A deal could look really good on paper financially, but the people that are running the business you're going to clash with or you're going to have a terrible time with, or they have different values and culture and ways of thinking about things.”
To be more sure there’s a match, he says to couple due diligence with a close look at the people running the business and the culture. Economies of scale are important, he says, “but I think it's also very important to understand who you're getting yourself in business with and how that fits going to be from a long-term perspective.”
Halpern talked on the Smart Business Dealmakers Podcast about the people aspect of acquisitions, as well as the importance of learning from one another post-integration.
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