Case Study

Merging two acquisitions: How Minetti built a high-performance, cohesive organization (A)

23 pages
December 2004
Reference: IMD-3-1484

In December 1998, the Swiss cement giant, Holcim (then known as “Holderbank”) acquired Corcemar S.A., an Argentine company in which it held a minority stake and with which it had a technical assistance agreement. Holcim then merged Corcemar with another Argentine rival, Minetti S.A. thus creating the second largest cement company in Argentina. The company faced a significant challenge to merge two complex and over-staffed rival family businesses, and transform them into a lean, efficient organization able to realize the potential synergies driving its acquisition of the companies. Between 1999-2002, the CEO, Carlos Bühler, and his top management team, carried out a remarkable turnaround that took place in three phases. In the first phase, Bühler and his team carried out a strategic plan to realize the immediate merger goals of realizing synergies and maximizing cash flow. Minetti then embarked on a second phase to further optimize the company in order to exploit emerging opportunities for synergies. The company then went on to an unexpected third phase of restructuring, forced on it by the Argentine crisis of 2002. The case follows the actions taken by Bühler, his technical director Jürg Brem, and their team, to integrate the two companies, turnaround their operations and build an effective, and high-performing, organization.

Turnaround, Cement, Post-merger Integration, People Development
Latin America, Argentina
1998 - 2003
Field Research
© 2004
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