Other Publication Details
Mandatory Fields
Mc Namara, P. and Stafford, B.
Stafford Group: Growth Strategy through Related and Unrelated Diversification.
Optional Fields
Teaching Case Diversification Acquisitions Performance Field Work Interviews Corporate strategy Unrelated diversification Related diversification Family business Recession Leadership Succession Target identification Target integration Financial statements Financial performance Sports retail Oil distribution
What is the strategic logic of a growth corporate strategy executed using a series of both related and unrelated acquisitions? Can such a strategy yield either economic benefits in the shape of financial returns, and/or diversification of risk for a privately owned group of firms? This strategy was conceived in during the height of an economic boom, but where post-acquisition integration straddles a period of rapid economic decline? What are the risks and opportunities attached to such a strategy across radically different economic conditions? This case describes the diversification strategy of the Stafford Group, a family business founded in 1891. In 2004, at just 32 years of age Mark Stafford becomes the CEO of the group. Over a five year period the firm spent approximately - 194 million on acquisitions, with matching disposals of 60.3 million euros. Prior to the arrival of the new CEO the Group had three divisions: oil distribution, hotels and shipping. Through a series of acquisitions he creates a new Sports Retailing division, deepens involvement in oil distribution, creates a new property development division, and begins to exit the hotel and shipping business via a series of disposals. This strategy resulted in rapid change in the economics of the group with 75% of all profits deriving from acquisitions and disposals. The Irish economy is booming from 1990 to 2007, outperforming all OECD economies in terms of GNP growth, however this goes into sharp reverse with -2.8% decline in GNP in 2008 and -11.3% in 2009 and a return to growth not predicted until 2011. How will the strategy of diversification via acquisitions survive or prosper in this new environment? The case outlines the major acquisitions and disposals of the Group from 2003 to 2009. It describes the management's stated strategic objectives of diversification and their perspective on how they add value to the portfolio of companies within the group. Exhibits provide information on the financial performance of the group from 1999 to 2008 (P&L; balance sheets; creditor and debtor details; and cash flow statements); the process of target identification and integration and competitive information on the oil and sports sectors.
Case Centre
Code 310-088-1
Grant Details