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“Cerebrus Round Table on Mergers & Acquisitions”

In 2006, the volume of Global Mergers and Acquisitions touched an all time high of over $3.4 tn. During this time, M&A activity in India too increased significantly. Many organizations have been grappling with employee related issues arising from M&As, whether it is dealing with alignment of structures and policies of the integrating entities or with matters of employee communication and employee retention. Another big challenge faced by organizations is to manage the change process and the cultural integration of the merging entities.

To dwell on these and other key issues of M & A, Cerebrus hosted a round table in Pune on 'Mergers & Acquisitions' to coincide with the inauguration of its Pune branch. In this conference, Cerebrus shared some of the learnings from work done in this area and also invited senior HR and business leaders to share their experiences. The participants included HR and business professionals from sectors as diverse as Engineering, Manufacturing, IT, ITES as well as Academia.

The round table was chaired by Ms. Anita Ramachandran, Founder and CEO of Cerebrus Consultants. The Key note address was delivered by Mr. Maheshwari, CFO of Bharat Forge Ltd. who shared experiences of the company and the approach, especially in managing international acquisitions.

Mr. Gautam Chakravarti, COO, Bilcare shared his experiences in managing integrations both from a business and people perspective. He shed light on the many advantages and pitfalls. Both Mr. Maheshwari and Mr. Chakravarti's sessions provided the business manager's perspective.

Mr. Dipak Gadekar of HSBC Software Development India Pvt Limited took questions from the audience in the area of managing integrations from a line point of view. Having been involved in a number of 3-4 processes, he also gave instances of well orchestrated knowledge transfer processes.

Radhika Mittal & Rajashri Hazare, Directors at Cerebrus Consultants made a presentation on our learnings from the extensive work we have done in the M&A domain - critical areas to be addressed from a people perspective, different approaches taken by companies, critical Do's and Don'ts.

Mr. Elango R, Chief Human Resources Officer of the integrated company Mphasis and EDS, provided insights on real life issues that crop up during integrations. This last session was especially interesting from the point of view that it dealt with an ongoing integration and the "emphasis" on simplicity. A sizeable HR contingent representing both Mphasis and EDS was present for this session.