In my upcoming book, Growth By Acquisition Makes Dollars & Sense, I end each chapter with a short story about a client who grew their company by buying another one (or more than one). Here’s one of those stories.
John Hoyt is the founder and CEO of Picture Source NW, in Seattle www.picture-source.com, one of the nation’s leading providers of art for residential and commercial customers. Most recently John acquired Somerset Studios in North Carolina, one of a handful of acquisitions he has made.
There are three things John likes best about acquisitions:
The adventure (of the process). It’s thrilling to him to find a company that adds value to Picture Source and put a deal together.
The increased energy level. Everybody gets “jazzed” as it comes together and during the transition. He’s found it not only brings together his team but also the employees of the other company.
The culture improvement. He’s found this brings everybody together and the results spills over to the other aspects of the business.
When asked why he’s made acquisitions his answer sounded like the perfect segue to Chapter Two as he rattled off five reasons.
- To open up a new distribution channel.
- Location, i.e. geographic expansion, which also can lower overall costs (now having an East Coast location saves Picture Source a lot of money on shipping).
- Talent, especially on the creative side.
- New account base, customers he couldn’t get without the products and channels.
- New capabilities, in his case meaning more products. For example, with his acquisition of Somerset he acquired an operation producing original artwork.
John’s tip for others is to hire outside advisors and use your team to avoid problems.