Symantec Corporation: Acquiring Entrepreneurial Companies

Posted: 23 Apr 1998  

Thomas F. Hellmann

University of Oxford - Said Business School; University of British Columbia (UBC) - Sauder School of Business; University of Oxford - Said Business School

Abstract

Key words: acquisition, entrepreneurial finance, strategic investment, organizational integration
Setting: Symantec Corporation, 1996 , computer industry


Symantec Corporation has a competitive position that allows it to market and distribute a variety of software. It's strategy is not to rely solely on internal development of new products, but also to acquire entrepreneurial companies with innovative technologies that have not yet reached significant market presence. The case examines the company's process of managing acquisition. There are three main phases, prospecting deals, doing the due diligence and deal structuring, and managing the integration. The case examines this process both from the perspective of Symantec, and from the perspective of two of the companies that were acquired. The case emphasizes the importance of anticipating and managing the organizational changes that are necessary to create the incremental value that would make the acquisition worthwhile. It also emphasizes that some of the conflicts between the acquiring and the acquired companies are inevitable. For example, in both of the acquired companies examined in the case study the founders left the company shortly after the acquisition.

JEL Classification: G30

Suggested Citation

Hellmann, Thomas F., Symantec Corporation: Acquiring Entrepreneurial Companies. Stanford Case Number S-SM-27. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=79279

Thomas F. Hellmann (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Said Business School ( email )

Park End Street
Oxford, OX1 1HP
Great Britain
+44 (0)1865 288937 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.sbs.ox.ac.uk/community/people/thomas-hellmann

University of British Columbia (UBC) - Sauder School of Business ( email )

2053 Main Mall
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2
Canada
604-822-8476 (Phone)
604-822-8477 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://strategy.sauder.ubc.ca/hellmann

University of Oxford - Said Business School ( email )

Park End Street
Oxford, OX1 1HP
Great Britain
+44 (0)1865 288937 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.sbs.ox.ac.uk/community/people/thomas-hellmann

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