It has been recently announced that Informatica (a software company that provides data management tools) is to be acquired by Permira Funds and a Canadian pensions investment fund. I have been witness to many takeovers within the financial services sector. It is one of the inevitabilities of our society. Whatever it is... if it's for sale, someone will buy it.
I have seen companies purchased for many reasons. I remember one software company was purchased by their customer because they were due to renew their licenses, and it was cheaper for the customer to acquire the company.
While the takeover of Informatica has been received positively by their customers, there are definitely some things to consider when one of your tech suppliers is taken over.
- Will your supplier still have the same ethical considerations?
- Will they stay committed to providing service to your business, or are they planning to move to another sector?
- Will they be asset stripped?
- Are they planning to deploy with different technologies (forcing you to acquire more software/hardware to remain compatible)?
- Will they be changing release cycles, and how will that affect you?
- How will the process for engagement with them change?
- Will their prices go up or down?
- How will any relocation plans affect you?
- Will their standards of data quality suffer?
Supplier risk management is an emerging discipline as modern companies become increasingly dependent upon each other for their success.
The key message is:
"Don't wait until you read about your supplier problems in the newspapers."