As markets and industries contract or even collapse, this could put you into survival mode. Everything being “on sale” and the opportunity to grab market share could/should look very enticing. As always, be careful. You deserve what you get when you bottom fish. Just because you can buy it, doesn’t mean you should.
Be mindful of not only purchase price but also the cost of integration. Buying for the customer base without a strong customer on boarding process is a receipt for disaster! The process should be comprehensive and will cost more and take longer than you think. It should include a process for integrating the sales staff, customer service through to operations and support. Generally with a good plan, it takes a minimum of 18 months with a 20% customer run-off. Put this in your acquisition purchase model and don’t listen to the seller’s inflated promises! They simply can’t or haven’t ever forecasted through the sale of a company to you.
Check out the blog, sales and operations tips to get more ideas.