PREPARE PROPOSAL

We should know at this stage who is likely to review the proposal, both internally and in the Client's organisation. We need to select the most appropriate proposal or bid approach - for example, has the Client specified how the proposal/bid should be submitted? Is it going to be formally presented? A final check should also be made to ensure that everything in the proposal has the agreement of each person in the Client DMU. One technique that works quite effectively is to prepare a proposal for each DMU member, highlighting the areas of most concern to them.

PRESENT AND CLOSE

We should check that timing is appropriate for presenting the proposal. We should establish who on the Client side is likely to attend the proposal session and whether they will ask questions as the proposal unfolds or at the end. We then arrange a suitable date, time and venue to suit the Client. During the presentation we should re-check with the Client that the solution still meets the Client's needs and requirements as these may have changed in the interim. It is worth attempting to close on a commitment from the Client and to counter all objections. If there is agreement, the assignment has been won and will have been worth the necessary painstaking effort.

BUILD A CONTINUING BUSINESS RELATIONSHIP

It is important to track the progress of such a major assignment and to monitor the implementation of the solution to assure Client satisfaction. We can measure and report the actual results and also check for any new requirements. As we move through the implementation stage, we should ensure that we are trying to integrate our firm with the Client's processes.

The above strategic Client Planning Process is displayed as a checklist template in Appendix 4.

EXAMPLE OF A STRATEGIC CLIENT PLAN

Confidential

• Executive summary.

• Client profile.

• Income history.

• Market analysis.

• Competitive comparison.

• Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats analysis of Client situation.

• Assumptions for the future.

• Objectives.

• Strategies.

• Action programme.

• Client reviews.

Executive Summary

ABC Corporation has been a Client of our firm since June, 201 I. We have acted in an advisory capacity earning fees of around £250,000 per year. Recent changes in the corporation's strategy have highlighted opportunities for our firm to provide other services with a potential annual fee income of well over £2m. This plan sets out these opportunities and how we plan to leverage our credentials to gain new business during the next year.

Client Profile

ABC was formed from the merger of A and BC companies in 2008. At that time it had an annual turnover of £2bn, supplying agricultural equipment throughout Europe. In 2013 its turnover had risen to £5bn and a further merger with Japan's DE Corporation in the Far East is now in progress. This merger will allow equipment manufacture in two strategic locations to serve world markets. ABC is structured to serve European markets, and has recognised the growth opportunities in China and other eastern markets. It is looking to establish a new hub in Asia within two years.

Income History

2011 -£247,000

2012-£302,000

2013 -£342,000 Market Analysis

ABC occupies a strong position in the European agricultural supplies sector, ranking only second in its specialist category to CATT Inc. It has a small presence outside Europe, but has resisted the temptation to enter the highly competitive US market which is dominated by KKM Inc. It estimates the value of the Asian market to be around £30bn alone by 2015. DE has a turnover of £4bn in this market.

Competitive Comparison

Overall market size - estimated at around £40bn in 2013, rising to £60bn by 2016.

ABC - £5bn, around 12% share of global market

CATT - £8bn, market leader in Europe, 20% share globally.

DE - £4bn in Far East, 10% share globally.

KKM - £20bn in USA and South American markets, 50% share globally. Others -Around 10 suppliers make up the balance of £3bn globally.

Table 9.1 SWOT of Client Situation

Strengths

Weaknesses

Opportunities

Threats

Product quality

No coverage in Asia

Growth in Asia

Opposition from KKM

After sales service

High manufacturing costs

Merger with DE

Rising labour costs in Europe

Sector knowhow

little exposure to Asian culture

Establish new base in China

Local competition in new markets

Strong Client relationships

Few Clients outside Europe

Client relationship development

Farming practices in Asia unknown to ABC

Strong pnancial base

Declining market in Europe

Links with KKM

DE merges with KKM

Assumptions for the Future

We anticipate being called upon to bid for the merger due diligence if ABC's talks with DE continue positively. We believe that we are in pole position.

There could also be advisory work with setting up of licence agreements. Objectives

• Ensure that our strong relationships with the CEO and CFO of ABC continue.

• Secure the M&A fees of around £l.5m attributable to a merger with DE during 2014.

• Bid for licence fee advisory work when appropriate.

Strategies

Enlarge our ABC Client team to include specialist advisory associates in the USA, Japan and China.

Action Programmes

• Relationship partner to contact ABC's CEO in January to establish strategy meeting by March 2014.

• Head of M&A to visit associates in Japan for preparatory discussions about merger when cleared with ABC.

• Analyst to map the decision making teams in ABC and DE with the help of ABC's CFO, our 'coach' in ABC.

• Advisory teams to be briefed about opportunities and bid preparation.

Client Reviews

The most recent Client satisfaction report shows a high loyalty score from ABC, so we can expect to increase our share of their expenditure on advisory work in the coming years. Our Client satisfaction score has been at 9 or 10 (Promoter)in the past two years. Ensure that next review precedes the forthcoming merger.

 
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