acquisition business plan example

How to Put Together a Business Plan for an Acquisition

acquisition business plan example

Kison Patel is the Founder and CEO of DealRoom, a Chicago-based diligence management software that uses Agile principles to innovate and modernize the finance industry. As a former M&A advisor with over a decade of experience, Kison developed DealRoom after seeing first hand a number of deep-seated, industry-wide structural issues and inefficiencies.

acquisition business plan example

What is Acquisition Planning?

Acquisition planning is when the acquirer identifies and builds relationships with potential targets. More specifically, these targets meet the acquirer’s predetermined, strategic criteria.

‍ The strategy behind acquisition planning leads to stronger outcomes for both sides of the deal and must, therefore, be the foundation of acquisition plans.

Acquisition plan templates often include a summary of this overarching strategy, criteria for potential targets, a list of potential targets, timelines, risk management and due diligence materials, as well as integration planning materials.

We at DealRoom work with many companies helping them organize their M&A process . So let's start with the overview.

How to create an acquisition plan

One of the principal errors that many M&A practitioners make before making an acquisition is not putting together a business plan. The business plan is an invaluable asset when planning M&A.

It creates a roadmap for what you’re looking for from a business acquisition, as well as providing reassurance to those funding the deal that the rationale behind it is solid and that the decision to acquire is not being made on a whim.

The format of the business plan for an acquisition has a similar structure to that of a business plan for a startup and includes many of the same sections.

When writing either of these documents, you should be asking yourself ‘does what I’m writing sell the opportunity?’

If the answer to that question is ‘ no ,’ you need a rethink, maybe not just for the document, but perhaps for the acquisition itself.

Having said all that, here’s a typical outline of how a business plan for an acquisition should look:

1. Executive Summary

Even though it comes at the beginning, most how-to guides on business acquisition plans suggest leaving the summary of an acquisition transaction until you’ve written everything else.

While this is pretty sound advice, a good rule of thumb is that, if what you’re proposing is compelling enough, you should have a rough draft of the executive summary in mind before even beginning.

A good executive summary should cover a page and sell the opportunity as best as possible, covering its target market, your strategy and summary financials. This is often the only page that investors read before skipping to the financial projections, so make sure it’s strong.

2. Target Description

This section of acquisition plan outlines the business you’re acquiring and why it’s worth what you’re proposing to pay for it. Be as thorough as possible here. If there are weaknesses that you see in the business, introduce them and talk about how you can iron them out and generate value.

At a minimum, include details such as

  • headline financials
  • a breakdown of the company’s long-term assets (factory, head office, facilities, stores, etc.) and liabilities
  • a SWOT analysis
  • corporate structure.

If the company operates in a different segment to your own, show how you can make this work in your favor.

3. Market Overview

A common error when looking at the market overview is to think globally.

Startup investor Peter Thiel refers to this, whimsically noting that someone owning a restaurant could say that they’re entering a trillion dollar industry, when in reality, their market is a five mile radius around the location of the restaurant.

The more granular the detail here, the better.

  • How many customers does the target have, and what kind of customers are they?
  • Will you lose their business if the current owner moves on?
  • What kind of demand is there for the business outside of its current customer base?

4. Sales and Marketing

This section provides an overview of the sales for each of the target’s products and services. It should show their pricing strategy and how it compares to your own, and how the company currently conducts its marketing.

For example, if it uses mailing lists to contact customers, is that something you could leverage for your own products and services?

Or perhaps you feel it’s not investing enough in marketing and that you could increase sales by investing in this area. In either case, outline the ‘quick wins’ that you can exploit here after acquiring the business.

5. Financial History and Projections

When looking for financing for an acquisition, this section is the one which will make or break the deal. Thus, you should be as thorough as possible here, analyzing the target’s past financial performance.

At a minimum, this should involve three years of financial statements and tax returns but five or more is even better.

The analysis should be comprehensive and honest. It should raise issues that may conflict with your own business - for example, different credit arrangements with customers or a significant difference in capital structure.

Once this has been completed, you can look at projections for the business. These projections should tie in everything you’ve written until now; if you plan to increase sales and marketing, this should show in the income statement; if you’re going to use income from the acquired business to pay down debt, this also needs to be accounted for.

There is no right answer for how much your growth projections should be, but it should be justified by the vision that you’ve laid out until now.

An interesting, if potentially complex, sub-section to add to the financial analysis are the gains from synergies and losses from cannibalism that you see emerging from the deal.

Synergies might come from cutting some admin or sales staff or merging sales channels (for example, online or direct mail) after the acquisition.

Cannibalism arises when you’ve got one of your sales reps selling the new, wider product range, and the customer ends up choosing the target’s product over your own.

It’s easy to fall into the proverbial rabbit hole with this section, but it’s still a useful exercise to make you think about where gains (and losses) will be made from the acquisition.

6. Transition Plan

This is typically a brief section that shows how the business will move from the control of the current owners to your own. This is not purely about ownership, however.

It should also detail how current sales relationships, contracts, and intellectual property are dealt with in the transition.

You can minimize the disruptive influence of the acquisition by getting this section right. If there are complex processes at the target company, know who performs them and how this will be dealt with.

Thousands of acquisitions are botched every year by undervaluing seemingly small processes which generate value right across the business.

7. Deal Structure

The topic of deal structure has been covered well elsewhere [link], and these articles can be of assistance when adding this section.

Having put together a failsafe case for acquiring the target company, now you show the financial structure you will use to do so.  

8. Appendices/Supporting Documents

A major difference between writing a business plan for a startup and one for a business acquisition is the variety of supporting documents attached.

At a minimum, this should include copies of tax returns and licenses, but could go into greater depth and show contracts with large customers, auditors’ letters and any other legal documents deemed relevant.

Using a merger and acquisition proposal sample can provide helpful guidance when determining which supporting documents to include.

Business Plan for an Acquisition

Download acquisition plan/proposal templates

  • Business acquisition proposal sample template
  • Acquisition strategy sample template (m&a strategy template)
  • Business acquisition plan template

While there is room for some variation in sections of each business plan, one thing every plan should have in common is its ability to convince the reader of the merits of the acquisition. Each section should be detailed and compelling.

If you’re not willing to put in the groundwork on a business plan, an investor is entitled to ask, ‘ why should I give a million dollars to someone who can’t write 20 pages? ’

By spending time on the business plan, and taking a critical perspective, you maximize the chances of your acquisition finding a funder, and simultaneously creating a strategy for the acquisition that primes it for success.


Still unsure where to start?

acquisition business plan example

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acquisition business plan example

acquisition business plan example

Business Acquisition Plan: What to Include in 2023 (+ Template)

Kison Patel

Kison Patel is the Founder and CEO of DealRoom, a Chicago-based diligence management software that uses Agile principles to innovate and modernize the finance industry. As a former M&A advisor with over a decade of experience, Kison developed DealRoom after seeing first hand a number of deep-seated, industry-wide structural issues and inefficiencies.

acquisition business plan example

A business acquisition plan is an important component of planning for an M&A transaction, regardless of whether you require external financing. A solid business acquisition plan should lay out the rationale for the investment, and how it will add value for the entity. In this article, FirmRoom takes a closer look at how these documents should be crafted.

Understanding Business Acquisition Plan

A business acquisition plan is a strategy document, which serves the purpose of a business plan for an M&A transaction.

Business Acquisition Plan

It outlines the motives behind a transaction, profiles of the companies involved in the transaction, how the transaction will generate value for the entity which is driving it, how the two companies will be integrated, and how the merged company (or simply acquired company in the case of an investment firm acquiring a company) is expected to perform.

Reasons to Have a Business Acquisition Plan

An acquisition plan provides its users with a roadmap to making the transaction a success. Even before the transaction is initiated, it acts as a reminder to the sponsors, what they’re looking for, why they’re looking for it, and how they’re going to ensure that the transaction is a success.

In general terms, the reasons to have a business acquisition plan are:

Strategic alignment

The overriding goal of a business acquisition plan, as the opening text alludes to, is strategic alignment: ensuring that those undertaking the deal, for lack of a better expression, ‘stick to the plan’, around the motives and means for making the deal a success.

Valuation and pricing

The plan should include strategies and methodologies for valuing the target company. It should guide the deal participants on how to determine a fair value for the target, assess synergies, and estimate future financial returns. It also sets a limit on how much the company can extend itself financially for a deal to occur.

Financing and resource allocation

Financing (sources and uses of funds) is just one part of the resource allocation conundrum. The business acquisition plan also outlines the working capital needs, who works where, how expenditures are going to shift, what capital assets are required, and more.

Business acquisition Plan template

The insight that FirmRoom has gained from working with hundreds of companies on thousands of transaction, have been collated in a business acquisition plan template.

This provides a detailed roadmap of what should be included in an effective business acquisition plan, ensuring that its users have everything in place for the conclusion of a successful transaction.

Sign up here (insert link) to receive a copy of the template.

Creating a Business Acquisition Plan Step-by-Step

While developing a business acquisition plan is recommended, having an ineffective acquisition plan is worse than having none at all.

The document has to be watertight, creating no doubt in the reader’s mind about the benefits of an acquisition.

inclusion of business acquisition plan

A strong business acquisition plan should make the reader think that it makes far more sense to go ahead with the transaction than for the company to continue in the status quo.

That being said, the following should only be seen as a rough step-by-step guide to putting together a business acquisition plan:

Strategy development

Best practice:

  • Identify where the company wants to be in each of the next five years, possibly on a month-by-month basis, and how it plans to get there. See here for example.
  • Identify the key performance indicators that need to be tracked to ensure that the company meets these objectives.
  • Based on both of the above, ask whether an acquisition is a crucial part of the company achieving those objectives, before moving forward.

Identifying and evaluating target companies

  • Understand where the companies that fit into the strategy will be found , and be thorough and objective in the search for them.
  • Be realistic about the companies that can be acquired/merged with, including valuations ,  so as not to waste resources for other companies and your own.
  • Remember that just because a company is the only one that’s available, it doesn’t mean that a transaction is a good idea.

Due Diligence

  • Use technology ; any M&A practitioner that decides against using a sound technology platform for due diligence is doomed to failure.
  • Adopt a mindset where due diligence is considered an investment in the acquisition, rather than a cost to your own company;
  • Do not fall for the M&A acquirer’s fallacy of ‘we’ve come this far, so we can’t go back.’ If due diligence says the deal isn’t right, it isn’t.
  • Begin the post-merger integration phase as soon as the deal begins to look like a realistic possibility (something which DealRoom is designed to cater for).

Deal structure and negotiation

  • Leverage the findings of due diligence to create a more informed negotiation process.
  • Remember that there will be back and forth with the seller, and they can be reasonably expected to overvalue their asset.
  • Consider all market outcomes (i.e. downturns, current value of stock vs. future value, etc.) when creating an offer. Avoid irrational exuberance.

Post merger integration (PMI)

  • Keep in mind at all times during the PMI phase that this is where most of the value can be generated and lost in a transaction.
  • As mentioned, begin the process as soon as possible. If the transaction is visible on the horizon, you need to start thinking about its integration.
  • Don’t write this off as a ‘soft’ or unnecessary part of the transaction - it won’t be soft when it impacts on your income statement.

Common mistakes to avoid when writing a business acquisition plan

Despite plenty of advice to the contrary, enthusiastic CXOs often write acquisition plans which fail to avoid the pitfalls.

These are among the most common:

Putting the acquisition before the strategy

The acquisition is part of the overall strategy, not the other way around. Companies that are approached by others about a deal, and then somehow convince themselves that there is a strong rationale for a deal, fall foul to this backwards logic.

Management hubris

M&A is an area ripe with management hubris (take a glance at Google Scholar at all the academic texts that link the two). That means management hubris inevitably finds its way into business acquisition plans. Avoid it at all costs - it’s a highly costly behavioural pattern for companies of all sizes.

Lack of detail

The business acquisition plan is a strategy document, not a marketing one. That is to say, it should break down in a step-by-step fashion how the deal will generate value. The more detailed the better. “Creating an outstanding organization” is great, but writing it in the business acquisition plan won’t add any value.

Business acquisition plan template

A business acquisition plan is a hugely worthwhile document that all M&A practitioners should write in order to discern the value of a transaction and how that value can be extracted. It is the business plan for an M&A transaction. Sign up for the template above to receive guidelines on how to create the document and make it work for your transaction.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

acquisition business plan example

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acquisition business plan example

Download Free Merger and Acquisition Templates for Business

By Joe Weller | February 15, 2019

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In this article, you’ll find 20 of the most useful merger and acquisition (M&A) templates for business (not legal) use, from planning to valuation to integration. These templates are available for free download in Microsoft Excel, Word, and PowerPoint formats, as well as PDF files.

Free M&A Planning and Strategy Templates

Merger timeline template.

Merger and Acquisition Merger Timeline Template

This simple template provides a visual outline for your merger schedule. The timeline separates the phases of a typical merger, with space to list key activities and due dates. You can use this initial schedule throughout the process as a blueprint for your efforts.

Download Merger Timeline Template

Excel  |  Word  |  PDF  | Smartsheet

M&A Project Charter Template

Merger and Acquisition Project Charter Template

A project charter is a formal narrative document in which you detail your goals, proposed budget, schedule, and responsibilities, as well as the problems you hope to solve with your venture — in this case, a merger or an acquisition. Use the Excel template to outline the planned aspects of the M&A; it will be the blueprint for the final narrative document in Word or PDF.

Download M&A Project Charter Template

Excel  |  Word  |  PDF

Roles and Responsibilities Template

Merger and Acquisition Images and Responsibilities Template

A merger or acquisition will succeed only when everyone understands their roles and responsibilities from the outset. Use this standard roles and responsibilities template to organize team members by project and list their duties at each phase of the merger. Additionally, you can use this template for staffing and retention when you integrate organizations.

Download Roles and Responsibilities Template

Excel  |  Word

M&A Communication Plan Template

Merger and Acquisition Communications Plan Template

Use this template to plan communication for all stakeholders throughout the M&A process. This template includes separate charts for internal and external communications. It has space to list each stakeholder’s power or interest, their key issues, their communication vehicle and point person, their written copy, their frequency of communication, and any additional comments. Planning your communication at the outset — and updating your strategy along the way — can help ensure that both outside stakeholders and current employees stay up to date throughout the implementation process.

Download M&A Communication Plan Template

Excel | Word | PDF

Deliverables Chart Template

Merger and Acquisition Deliverables Chart Template

This template provides a chart to list each deliverable at every stage of the M&A process, from initiation and valuation through implementation and review. List each deliverable, description, criterion for acceptance, and party responsible, and easily track the status of each item. Built-in child rows allow you to add project phases if your merger or acquisition requires more steps. Refer to this deliverables chart throughout integration to ensure you haven’t missed any details.

Download Deliverables Chart Template

M&A Press Release Template

Merger and Acquisition Press Release Template

Available as Word and PDF files, this template provides an outline for formally announcing news of a merger or acquisition. The template includes space for company logo(s), the deal agreement, contact and background information, quotes from executives, and the company boilerplate. But you can add or delete sections to fit the needs of your press release. You can find additional press release templates for business use  here .

Download M&A Press Release Template

Word  |  PDF

Strategic M&A Presentation Template


Use this PowerPoint deck to present the business case for your M&A strategy. The template includes a slide for each phase of the merger or acquisition, with space to detail your intended approach and processes. The final slide enables you to list list strengths, weaknesses, and resources for different aspects of the target company in a pre-built infographic and functions as a high-level capabilities and asset analysis. Showcase your well-researched strategy and plan with this professional M&A proposal template.

‌ ‌ Download Strategic M&A Presentation Template - PowerPoint

Free M&A Valuation and Process Templates

Due diligence template.

Merger and Acquisition Due Diligence Template

Use this template to track and store information about each due diligence item. List all reference information about the item, along with the start and end dates, the party responsible, and the status. Additionally, the built-in Gantt chart allows you to simultaneously track multiple items against your project schedule, so that you can stay on top of every detail and adapt the timeline as needed.

‌ ‌ Download Due Diligence Template - Excel

Synergy and Culture Mapping Exercise

Culture Mapping Exercise Template

Evaluating company synergy is not only about financials, but also about culture. This template walks you through a culture analysis: Using a scale from 1 to 5, evaluate multiple aspects of a company’s strategic orientation, communication, training and development, planning, teamwork, and other operations categories. This exercise will help you identify differences in the two companies, so you can address them during implementation.

Download Synergy and Culture Mapping Exercise

Merger and LBO Model Valuation

Merger and LBO Valuation Model Template

A leveraged buyout (LBO) is a type of transaction in which the acquiring company uses borrowed money — including its own and the target company’s assets and equity — to cover the cost of acquisition. This template provides a step-by-step valuation for an LBO, with sample data to guide your own calculations.

Download Merger and LBO Model Valuation

Excel  | Google Sheets

Discounted Cash Flow Valuation Model

Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) Valuation Model Template

Discounted cash flow (DCF) is a valuation method that you can use to evaluate an investment (in this case, merging with or acquiring a company) based on estimates of its future cash flow. Use this template to find the present value of expected future cash flow by inputting net sales, profit, and other financial information, and follow the calculations to determine the value of the investment.

Download Discounted Cash Flow Valuation Model

Free M&A Integration Templates

Integration issue form.


Issues are bound to come up during integration, and this simple issue form allows you to track these challenges. The chart includes sections for listing a number and a description for the issue, as well as the team member responsible, the date it was reported, the action taken, the priority, and the status. Thus, you can monitor both the issues that arise and the responsiveness of your team throughout the integration process.

Download Integration Issue Form

Excel | Word  | PDF  | Smartsheet

Change Management Process Template

Change Management Process Template

Just like any organizational change, integration requires planning. Use this change management template to outline the processes that will help you integrate the companies’ cultures, finances, roles and responsibilities, and more. This template is formatted like a flow chart, so you can view the entirety of the process schedule.

Download Change Management Process Template

Word  |  PDF  | Smartsheet

Post-Merger Integration Plan

Post Merger Integration Plan Template

Once you’ve closed the deal, you need to create an integration plan — typically, a lengthy document that outlines the changes facing each department in terms of structure, communication, and culture. Use this template to detail your integration strategy, objectives, resourcing, and execution plan. This template outlines the categories you can include, but you can adapt it to fit your needs.

Download Post-Merger Integration Plan

M&A Integration Scorecard Template

Merger and Acquisition Integration Scorecard Template

Use this template to evaluate integration 100 days and one year after you close the merger or acquisition. The template includes sections for detailing financial and operational synergies, total cost savings, market and customer synergies, and goals and projections for the coming year. By using a scorecard, you can hold yourself accountable to your initial objectives and take lessons for the future. Download the template in Excel or Word for internal data-gathering or as a PowerPoint slide to present to stakeholders and executives.

Download M&A Integration Scorecard Template

Excel  |  Word  |  PDF  |  PowerPoint

Additional M&A Templates

Startup and small-business financial plan.

The templates in this section are not specific to M&A transactions, but they help in the planning and due diligence phases of the process.

Startup and Small Business Financial Plan Template

Startups and small businesses face different considerations and constraints than do large corporations. Use this simple Excel template to list costs, loans, and expenses, as well as to identify funding sources. This template functions similarly to a budget plan in that it allows you to track estimated and actual costs, as well as make adjustments along the way.

Download Startup and Small Business Financial Plan

Excel | Smartsheet

Strategic Business Plan

Strategic Business Plan Template

This comprehensive business plan template aids in planning and can function as a communication tool. With space to include company information, research, goals, and risks, this template provides a one-stop shop for managing all of the moving pieces of your business plan.

Download Strategic Business Plan

Excel  |  Smartsheet

Risk Management Plan Template

acquisition business plan example

During the M&A planning phase, you need to identify the risks associated with acquiring or merging with another company. This risk management template includes space for analysis and monitoring, numerical calculations, a risk register, and a list of potential risks. Use this template to identify and monitor risks for the duration of your merger or acquisition.

Download Risk Management Plan Template

Project Lifecycle Plan

Project Design Cycle Diagram

Understanding the lifecycle of your project — including the phases of your merger or acquisition — is crucial to planning the scope, resources, roles and responsibilities, and deliverables. This graphic template allows you to visualize your project lifecycle, from analysis and design all the way through implementation and monitoring. Add or delete phases to fit the needs of your endeavor.

Download Project Lifecycle Plan

What Is M&A?

M&A stands for merger and acquisition , a phrase that describes two companies or organizations that combine into one entity. The driving idea behind a merger or acquisition is that the companies together will be stronger, more competitive, or more profitable than they are by themselves.

Though the term M&A is common, mergers and acquisitions are actually two distinct concepts. A merger occurs when two companies of equal size or profitability come together, renounce their individual titles and stock, and continue as one unit. An acquisition occurs when one company (called the acquiring company ) buys another, smaller company (called the acquired or target company ). However, both terms generally refer to the consolidation of assets and liabilities that occurs when two entities combine into one.

Organizations have many reasons to choose M&A, but they essentially boil down to increasing synergy , the idea that when combined, two entities will be more powerful or competitive than they would each be on their own. On the buy side, the acquiring company might want access to certain technologies, resources, position in the market, or talent; on the sell side, the target company may want greater financial or market security.

There is a legal component to any merger or acquisition, but that is outside the scope of this article. Note that the templates provided here are intended for business use, not for lawyers.

Key Terms in M&A

The following is a list of key terms in M&A:

  • Asset vs. Stock Sale: In an asset sale, the acquiring company purchases the target company’s assets and liabilities; a stock sale is the purchase of the owner’s shares in a company. There are financial and liability concerns with both options, so be sure to consult legal counsel when deciding which route to pursue.
  • Consolidation: In M&A, this refers to the amalgamation of multiple organizations’ financials. Consolidation occurs in both mergers and acquisitions.
  • Joint Venture: This term refers to a business entity that is owned and governed by two or more parties.
  • Management Acquisition: Also called a management buyout, this is a type of acquisition in which a company’s existing management buys the company from the existing private owners or the parent company.
  • Tender Offer: This is a public, open invitation by a prospective acquirer to all shareholders of a publicly traded company. This potential acquirer interfaces directly with the stockholders to facilitate the exchange.

Tips for Executing M&A Strategy

A successful M&A begins with — and relies on — a well-thought-out, well-researched strategy. Planning is vital for both the acquiring and acquired company, as the process is extremely difficult, with substantial data, staff, and money on the line. Plan early and continuously throughout the merger or acquisition, and set expectations for roles and responsibilities early on in the process. Most M&As involve several people, and you need a strategy for who will own each aspect of the transition.

Once you’ve set your strategic plan for merging with or acquiring a company, you must perform due diligence. As outlined above, due diligence includes numerous assessments, from valuation to the analysis of synergy and culture. Think of due diligence as an in-depth, multifaceted way of contextualizing multiple companies. With proper due diligence, you ensure that the merger or acquisition is a good fit. It also confirms that you have the correct tools and adequate resources in place to integrate with minimal disruption to all involved parties.

For an in-depth look at M&A strategies, read this article. Here is a list of quick tips that will help you get started.

  • Be patient. Mergers and acquisitions are long-term investments, so treat them as such. Delays will inevitably arise, so stay patient and build in time for unexpected events.
  • Build accountability with your team. Train your team to understand that actions have consequences.
  • Continually make reviews. Perform ongoing due diligence.
  • Perform an independent integration assessment. Any deal can benefit from external help, especially the kind concerning particularly large or complex organizations.
  • Understand regulatory and other legal compliance issues before beginning the process. No merger or acquisition will succeed if it doesn’t meet legal standards. Consult legal counsel early in the process, so you can be sure you’re doing everything properly from the outset.
  • Don’t take the first offer. Sell-side parties should get multiple bids to discover their worth, and they shouldn’t be afraid to bargain if necessary.
  • Perform valuation systematically. The more you plan strategically, the less likely you are to suffer from information overload as you move through valuation and due diligence. Understand what information you need to obtain (and how you’ll obtain it) before jumping into analysis.
  • Create a transition plan. Even after you close the deal, you still have work to do. Create a transition plan to manage the organizational changes that both parties will undergo, clarify staff retention and responsibilities, and monitor integration over time.

Phases of M&A

Typically, mergers and acquisitions follow a similar process that includes the following general phases:

  • Planning: Planning includes elements ranging from strategy, initial research, and investor pitching to communication plans and timelines. Thorough planning is crucial to any successful M&A.
  • Valuation: This phase entails several specific and highly detailed steps, including financial valuation, culture and synergy mapping, and due diligence. Acquiring companies can use several different techniques to evaluate an organization’s profitability or holdings; many opt to hire outside counsel to perform these analyses.
  • Integration: Once you’ve signed the deal, it’s time to integrate the two business entities. Successful integration requires planning for organizational structure, finances, roles and responsibilities, culture, and much more. Be sure to monitor integration over time and strive to continually improve.

For a step-by-step walkthrough of M&A processes, read this article.

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How to Write a Business Plan for an Acquisition

  • Small Business
  • Business Planning & Strategy
  • Write a Business Plan
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How to Write a Business Plan Outline

How to amend the business name on a court document, how to overcome corporate cultural issues in mergers & acquisitions.

  • How to Write a Wedding Planning Business Plan
  • Step-Ups in Valuation of Assets for a Newly Acquired Business

Many considerations come with a business acquisition. Not only do you have to consider the cost of the purchase, you have to consider how your business will integrate the newly purchased assets and utilize, or relieve, the employees that come along with the business. The business plan takes these and other acquisition considerations, along with their pros and cons, and organizes them into reusable research and analysis.

Create the business description for your business plan. List the legal business description of your business and indicate that your business is acquiring a business. Provide a detailed account of that business’ history, including staff size, location, legal business description and financial history. Identify the business’ short- and long-term goals and projections.

Create your business plan’s staffing section. List the managers and staff required to complete the business’ operations in a timely and efficient manner. Explain the functions of each manager and identify each of your business’ departments.

Identify the number of acquired employees and show how those employees will be integrated into the business. List the costs of all employment aspects, including costs, such as payroll, training, benefits and severance packages. Create an organizational chart to show the chain of command.

List the location of your business, as well as the locations of any acquired property. Explain how the properties are utilized by the business, as well as the costs for each. Include items such as zoning compliance fees, utilities and taxes in your expense list.

Show if the properties are owned, leased or rented. Address which properties will be retained and which will be released. Determine how your business will utilize the equipment and inventory acquired during the acquisition. Explain the steps that your business will use to control its losses and increase its assets.

Identify the external threats and opportunities that accompany the business acquisition. Look at areas such as customer demands, government regulation and industry competition. Research the identified areas thoroughly. Develop strategies to overcome the threats that accompany the acquisition and ascertain how your company will take advantage of its underlying opportunities.

Identify the products and services that your business will focus on after the acquisition. Categorize the original products and services against the newly acquired ones. Show and explain the costs and procedures of implementing the change requirements and merging the businesses. Identify any newly created products that result from the merge of company resources and identify any new equipment or inventory that will be required.

Identify the target market for your business. Explain how this market has changed as a result of the acquisition. Differentiate the market by separating it into categories of original, acquired and new markets. Address each category separately. Ascertain how your business will maintain its original customer base, and welcome its acquired and new customers.

Create financial statements for your business acquisition. Include personal financial statements for each owner of the business. Provide a balance sheet, income statement and cash flow statement for the business at a point just after the acquisition. Use realistic figures and assumptions when forecasting the business. Include complete financial statements for your original business and acquired business, for the past three years, to support and justify your forecasts.

Use the executive summary to introduce your business, along with the new products and services that result from the acquisition. Highlight your company’s various target markets and briefly review the trends within the industry. Review the reasons for the acquisition and explain how the acquisition will make your company stronger. Limit the executive summary to no more than three pages.

Include a copy of the acquisition contract in the appendix of your business plan, along with supporting documents, such as lease agreements, warranties and building appraisals. Begin the appendix with a content page. Label the documents accordingly and place the appendix at the end of your business plan.

  • MasterCard International: The Plan

Writing professionally since 2004, Charmayne Smith focuses on corporate materials such as training manuals, business plans, grant applications and technical manuals. Smith's articles have appeared in the "Houston Chronicle" and on various websites, drawing on her extensive experience in corporate management and property/casualty insurance.

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