Eighty-four percent of respondents ranked people issues as extremely or very important, while integration was seen as a top priority in the M&A process by 80% of those surveyed, according to a summary of the Barometer findings. Pre-merger activities are also an important challenge, as 74% of respondents ranked financial due diligence as an important factor and 72% chose getting sound strategic advice during the M&A screening process.
Senior executives ranked Sarbanes-Oxley compliance at newly acquired entities as a lower concern than in previous surveys, PwC said. Sixty-six percent of respondents listed it as only somewhat important or not important, while 21% ranked it as extremely or very important.
Structuring of working capital adjustments and preparing for a divestiture were cited by 44% of respondents as important for a successful M&A deal and addressing accounting and SEC issues that arise during a transaction was cited by 38%.
Fifty-six percent of manufacturers included in the survey reported involvement in M&A activity and related transactions (e.g., joint ventures, alliances) during 2006. Sixty-four percent said they expected to participate in similar or related activity by the end of 2007.
The survey found a growing interest in foreign markets, as 26% of respondents reported plans for M&A in Asia and 13% in Latin America – both sizeable jumps from 2006, PwC said. Plans for deals in Europe show little change from 2006, with only a 2% increase to 15%.
The Manufacturing Barometer report can be accessed from here .