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Attensity Leverages Sterling’s Communication Expertise in Three-Way Merger Announcement
“Sterling was instrumental to the success of our recent corporate launch of the roll-up of three companies into Attensity Group,” Michelle de Haaff, Attensity Group’s chief marketing officer, said. “We’re fortunate to have a communications partner we can count on to deliver great results in the face of tight timelines and complex business dealings.”
Defining clear roles and responsibilities on the communications front at the outset of the process is absolutely vital to success in any merger or acquisition situation. The same goes for fostering a spirit of inclusion and proactively addressing the specific concerns of every constituency involved — including management, employees, investors, customers, partners and suppliers. Humans are eminently predictable in that they all want to know: “How will this deal affect me personally?”
Over the past two decades, Sterling Communications has worked behind the scenes to create successful outcomes in numerous merger and acquisition (M&A) situations. We’ve handled outright corporate spin-outs such as when ADP sold off its Claims Services Group (CSG) to Solera in 2006 for $975 million in the largest acquisition in the automotive claims solutions industry. In that case, we were tasked with orchestrating a cohesive internal and external communications program (presentations and press releases, FAQs, customer and employee communications, media and analyst interviews, etc.) to calm customers, partners and employees and ensure positive media reception.
Sterling has also orchestrated the communications around rapid-fire acquisitions designed to attract key management talent and expand a company’s geographic footprint, like the ones we promoted for leading online capital asset firm DoveBid when it acquired European-based Fairfield Industries and Asia-Pacific-based Victor Morris Group and Masongreene Australia Pty. Ltd.
Sterling’s most recent M&A communications project was announcing the roll-up of three semantic applications vendors to form the world’s leading business applications vendor for unstructured data: Attensity Group. On April 20, 2009, (after much internal work to prepare the required materials and brief key constituents), Sterling issued the press release announcing a business deal that unites Empolis GmbH, Living-e AG and Attensity Corporation. While the nature of this particular deal is more complex than usual given the different corporate structures of each entity — one was a part of the international media conglomerate Arvato-Bertlesmann, the second was a publicly traded company, and the third was a Silicon Valley VC-funded company — Sterling’s experience in the area of M&A communications brought industry analysts, customers and employees “on side” early and generated very positive media response as well.
Bottom line: We know when and how much to open the kimono (especially when public companies are involved). There are virtually no “do overs” in this realm, so it’s important to work with a communications partner like Sterling Communications who knows how to get things right the first time.
Image credit: “jule_berlin”