Ever have a challenging acquisition to manage? You have a big, powerful company with high brand visibility – and you buy another big, powerful company with high visibility. Now you face a dilemma that goes back to the time when Rome conquered Greece. Do we just call it Roman Empire? Or do we say, "Greece, Brought to you by the Roman Empire?" Or do we call it Greco-Roman-Ville?
Now see, the really smart guys – the financial firms that rule the capital markets – hire the best consultants to do it right. So, let's take the example of Bank of America acquiring Merrill Lynch (oh, you remember the details... The visionary heads of the two companies were blind-folded and put in a swimming-pool drained of water and told to flounder around until they bumped into someone else... something like that.) Now, how should they visually merge these two notorious brands?
Voila! I just received an analyst report... and here's the solution: You put one name on top of the other name – like bunk beds! And look, there's a little blankie over on the right.
How much do you think they paid for this? Nothing wrong with it. Just... arbitrary. (I hope not much.)