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Post-Deal Best Practices In the Socialize Acquisition by ShareThis

This post is a work in progress, since we’re just now selling our company Socialize to ShareThis.  I also wrote about how the experience feels, and what getting a deal done is like.

One of my goals is to ensure a successful outcome from the deal.  I'll start by defining what I mean by "successful outcome:"  That the combination of the two companies produces more value together than we would have been able to achieve alone.

The first thing I did was start writing an Integration Document with my co-founders when we signed the term sheet.  This document laid out the specific goals of the acquisition, the  resources we had at our disposal, and the key items we would need to request to achieve those goals.  Once we had co-edited that document in Google Docs to a point where we were all satisfied with it, I shared it with the ShareThis executive team.  

I had already discussed and gotten agreement from Kurt, the CEO, on what the main goals of the acquisition were pre-term sheet.  In the integration document, I outlined how we were going to prioritize those goals, and what resources we were going to put into them to achieve the goals.  

Socialize Was Acquired by ShareThis. Here's What The Experience Was Like.

As was reported in TechCrunch today, we've just signed a deal to sell our startup Socialize to ShareThis.  Although having a successful exit is a dream for many entrepreneurs, I find myself feeling a wide range of emotions and thoughts.  I'd like to share some of them in this blog to provide an honest assessment of what it's like to work tirelessly on a startup and then sell it.

The first thing I want to say is that often upon a sale, you'll hear everyone involved talk about how "pumped" or "excited" they are.  The truth of the matter is that it's much more complex than that.  There is absolutely a sense of excitement.  But I've asked for, and gotten, permission from ShareThis to speak honestly about the wide range of feelings and to speak to the complexity of it all so I can provide a more thoughtful and honest assessment than one typically sees in these situations.  Think of it as a peek under the covers of an acquisition.

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