I’ll be on CNBC’s Squaek Box program tomorrow morning at 8am, to discuss the recent trend of buyout firms canceling deals they had already agreed to (Sallie Mae, United Rentals, etc.). My fellow talking head will be Andrew Ross Sorkin, who wrote about the matter in today’s New York Times.
Andrew writes that “if broken deals haven’t hurt these firms’ reputations yet, they should.” And I agree, but no amount of pundit carping will make it so. Investment banks have short memories, and will sit back down at the same table once new deals are offered. Some of this is because the personalities themselves change (particularly following major layoffs), but more of it is about the mighty dollar.
In other words: Revenge is sweet, but an extra $100 million is sweeter. Or, as one of my panelists noted last week at Buyouts West, “Bankers are coin-operated.”