To describe the current state of the global economy as “uncertain” is very kind, and may come dangerously close to disingenuous. In scanning the headlines in today’s Wall Street Journal, the overwhelming majority are similar to “Alcoa, Caterpillar Lead Stocks Lower” and “Bernanke Tells ABC Economic Recovery Has ‘Long Way To Go.’” That said, there are a select few that contradict this generally pessimistic sentiment, such as “BofA Seeking Advice on Global Strategy,” “Trump Makes Return to Risk” and “Starwood Goes Shopping for U.S. Malls”.
In sports, a great defense may very well win championships; however, in business, this philosophy is doomed to fail. Businesses must be constantly reinvesting in their futures; a delicate balance of growth and expansion coupled with a continuous focus on improving operations and efficiency. To be sure, the economy of the past few years has forced every organization to focus on internal operations and to do more with less (which in turn has driven significant productivity gains).
The top three acquirers from January 2010 to the mid-point of 2011 (3M, GE, ABB) acquired 70 companies. The top ten netted just shy of 150 companies. These organizations are using the current “playing field” to their advantage, putting their stockpiles of cash reserves to work growing and expanding their organizations; pursuing their vision for the future. In business, this is how championships are won! What options does the current economic landscape offer to grow and expand your business?