11 recent mergers between NGOs in the aid sector


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NGO mergers and acquisitions are few compared to those in the for-profit sector. But they are becoming more frequent as donor funding dwindles and the desire to go local and widen impact increases. Here are 11 recent mergers and acquisitions between NGOs...

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11 recent mergers between NGOs in the aid sector

  1. 1. NGO Mergers and acquisitions A growing trend? 11 recent mergers between NGOs in the aid sector
  2. 2. Mergers  and  acquisi-ons  between  NGOs  in   the  aid  sector  are  not  new.  In  fact,  one  of  the   biggest   and  oldest  aid  groups,   Interna-onal   Rescue  Commi?ee,  was  born  in  1942  out  of   a   merger   between   the   Interna-onal   Relief   Associa-on   and   Emergency   Rescue   Commi?ee.   NGO   mergers   and   acquisi-ons,   though,   are   few   compared   to   those   in   the   for-­‐profit   sector.  But  they  are  becoming  more  frequent   as  donor  funding  dwindles  and  the  desire  to   go  local  and  widen  impact  increases.   Here  are  11  recent  mergers  and  acquisi-ons   between  NGOs...
  3. 3. Mercy  Corps  and  NetAid Merged  2007 This  wasn’t  the   first  merger   entered  into  by  Mercy  Corps.   In  2004,   it   joined   up   with   the   Conflict   Management   Group   to   build   its   peace-­‐ building   and   crisis   preven-on   exper-se.   With   NetAid,   Mercy   Corps   hopes  to  broaden  engagement  of  the  youth  and  “inspire  them  to  take   ac-on   for   a   be?er   world.”   Before   the   merger,   NetAid   struggled   to   develop   a   consistent   revenue   stream   beyond   the   receipts   from   the   simultaneous  televised  rock  concerts  in  1999  that  launched  it,  and  its   large  staff  and  pricey  New  York  headquarters  were  draining  its  finances.
  4. 4. Self  Help  Development  Interna>onal  and  Harvest  Help Now  known  as  Self-­‐Help  Africa Merged  2008 It  was   a  rare  case   of   cross-­‐border  deal   in   the  nonprofit   world  (Self   Help   Development   Interna-onal   was   based   in   Ireland   and   Harvest   Help  was  headquartered  in  the  United  Kingdom)  and  was  meant  to   “re-­‐engineer  our  business,”  noted  Self  Help  Africa  CEO  Ray  Jordan  in   an  interview  with  the  Financial  Times.  The  merged  en-ty  wanted  to   move   away   from   direct   implementa-on   to   research   and   advocacy.   Jordan   noted   that   the   merger   decreased   management   and   administra-on  costs  while  increasing  capacity  to  do  more  for  Africa.   In  the  process,  270  people  were  let  go,  bringing   the  size   of  staff  to   105.
  5. 5. Task  Force  for  Child  Survival  and  Interna>onal  Trachoma  Ini>a>ve Merged  2009 The  two  NGOs  said  the  decision  to  merge  was  a  way  to  leverage  their   resources   and   scale   up   efforts   to   eliminate   trachoma,   the   world’s   leading  cause  of   preventable  blindness.  ITI  is  now  a  program   under   The   Task   Force   for   Global   Health,   the   new   name   of   Task   Force   for   Child  Survival.
  6. 6. Ac>onAid  and  Mellemfolkeligt  Samvirke Now  known  as  Ac>onAid  Denmark Merged  2010 Call  it   an   “arranged   marriage”   not   a  takeover   by   Ac-onAid  of   MS,   said   former  MS  Uganda  chief  Mads  Benedictus  Jorgensen,  as  the  merger  serves   the  interest  of  the  two  organiza-ons:  Both  wanted  a  stronger  voice  and   presence  in  the  South.  MS  said  the  merger  would  reduce  its  transac-onal   costs,  providing  more  resources  to  its  democracy  and  an--­‐poverty  work.
  7. 7. Helvetas  and  Swiss  Founda>on  for  Development  and  Interna>onal  Coopera>on Now  known  as  Helvetas  Swiss  Intercoopera>on Merged  2011 The  merger  sought  to  strengthen  the  voice  of  the  two  organiza-ons  in  the  Swiss   and  European  development  stages,  boost  their  poten-al  to  secure  new  projects  and   funding  and  increase  their  efficiency  and  impact,  former  Intercoopera-on  CEO  Felix   von  Sury  told  Devex.  Intercoopera-on,  he  said,  was  keen  to  pursue  the  merger   because  it  “had  lost  its  somewhat  privileged  rela-onship”  with  the  Swiss  Agency  for   Development  and  Coopera-on,  leaving  it  with  two  op-ons  —  either  to  start  raising   funds  from  the  public,  which  he  said  was  expensive  and  risky,  or  become  a     consultancy-­‐type  of  an  en-ty,  which  would  not  sit  well  with  its  NGO-­‐minded  staff.
  8. 8. Première  Urgence  and  Aide  Médicale  Interna>onale Now  known  as  Première  Urgence-­‐Aide  Médicale  Interna>onale Merged  2011 The   idea   of   a   merger   came   from   AMI,   which   had   been   “experiencing   difficul-es,”   Thierry   Mauricet,   head   of   Première   Urgence-­‐Aide   Médicale   Interna-onale,  said  in  an  interview  for  Gro-us  Interna-onal.  He  called  the   merger   “an   alliance   of   trades   and   skills.”   Before   their   union,   the   two   humanitarian  NGOs  collaborated  on  several  occasions  such  as  in  the  Hai-   earthquake  and  Pakistan  flood  response.
  9. 9. FHI  and  AED Now  known  as  FHI  360 Purchase  agreement  signed  2011 In  March  2011,  AED  announced  plans  to  sell  its  assets  and  transfer  programs  to   another  organiza-on,  following  a  decision  by  the  U.S.  Agency  for  Interna-onal   Development  to  temporarily  suspend  new  funding  to  the  nonprofit  due  to   irregulari-es  uncovered  in  its  work  in  Pakistan  and  Afghanistan.  Three  months   later,  it  named  Family  Health  Interna-onal  as  its  sole  buyer.  Then  AED  President   and  CEO  Gregory  R.  Nible?  told  Devex  that  AED  opted  for  acquisi-on  to  “ensure   the  smooth  transfer  of  our  programs  and  projects  and  our  staff  into  a  new   home,  so  to  speak.”
  10. 10. CDC  Development  Solu>ons  and  U.S.  Center  for  Ci>zen  Diplomacy Merged  2012 Not  even  five  years  in  its  existence,  USCCD  became  financially  unviable,  as  it   relied  on  a  sole  donor  for  its  resources.  Today,  it  is  a  division  of  CDC   Development  Solu-ons,  and  as  per  the  announcement  of  the  merger,  USCCD   will  keep  its  exis-ng  programs,  website,  name,  staff  and  offices  in  Des   Moines,  Iowa.  Founder  Ann  Olsen  Schodde  said  the  merger  “strengthens  the   USCCD’s  posi-on  for  the  future  –  making  it  more  sustainable;  its  resources   more  robust;  its  network  more  broad.”  For  CDC  Development  Solu-ons’  part,   the  partnership  with  USCCD  will  allow  it  to  replicate  its  global  corporate   volunteer  program  in  the  United  States.
  11. 11. Plan  Interna>onal  USA  and  CEDPA Purchase  agreement  signed  in  2012 The   transac-on   involved   transferring   CEDPA’s   assets,   including   eight   USAID   subwards,   founda-on-­‐funded  grants  and  programs  implemented  by  its  Nigeria   office,   to   Plan.   It   doesn’t   cover   CEDPA   India   Society,   which   will   remain   independent.   In  an  interview   with  Devex   on  the   heels  of  the  acquisi-on,   Plan   Interna-onal   USA   CEO   Tessie   San   Mar-n   said:   “Olen-mes   because   we’re   so   focused  on  doing  good  and  fulfilling  our  mission,  we  don’t  think  enough  of  our   long-­‐term  view  when  it  comes  to  making  investments  in  ourselves.  We  need  to   start   looking   at   acquisi-ons   as   strategic   tools   much   more   seriously   than   we   have.”
  12. 12. Fundación  Luis  Vives  and  Acción  contra  el  Hambre Merged  2012 The   merger,   said   Ac-on   Against   Hunger-­‐Spain   in   its   2012   annual   report,   enabled  the  iNGO  to  start  working  inside  Spain,  which  reels  from  a  lingering   economic  crisis.  Ini-al  projects  promoted  social  and  professional  inclusion  of   those   most   affected   by   the   crisis,   through   entrepreneurial   ac-vi-es.   Fundacion,   prior   to   the   union,   worked   to   empower   Spanish   civil   society   groups.
  13. 13. In  announcing  the  merger,  Merlin  said  the  move   was  meant  to  “secure  a   sustainable   future   for   [its]   lifesaving   work.”   Save   the   Children,   its   spokesperson  told  Devex,   believes   the   partnership  will   help  it  achieve   its   2010-­‐2015  strategy.  The  transi-on  is  expected  to  last  within  18  months  from   July  2013  and  would  culminate  in  the  phased  transfer  of  Merlin’s  program   opera-ons  and  head  office  teams  to  Save  the  Children  Interna-onal.  Save   the  Children  works  in  all  of  Merlin’s  16  countries  of  opera-ons  save  for  Chad   and  the  Central  African  Republic. Save  the  Children  and  Merlin Merged  2013
  14. 14. Are NGO Mergers and acquisitions a growing trend? Read more: A game changer for Save the Children? Merlin: Anatomy of a doomed iNGO business model How Merlin merger can help Save the Children local partners Are iNGO mergers the wave of the future?