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Case Studies of Acquisitions Where One Company Takes the Other's Name

We found three acquisitions of Fortune 500 companies after which one company dropped their original name and took on the other's name. They were found by searching Fortune's website for the biggest acquisition deals to ensure that they were large deals and involving acquisitions of Fortune 500 companies. Of the list found on Fortune's website, three scenarios were provided in which a company was purchased, dropped their original name, and now operates under the purchasing company's name: TransCanada's acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group for $13.2 billion, Abbott Laboratories acquisition of St. Jude Medical for $30.6 billion, and Shire's acquisition of Baxalta for $32 billion. All three companies are global. Two of the examples are in the health/pharmaceutical industry and one is a leading energy infrastructure company.

Acquisition of St Jude Medical by Abbott Laboratories

On January 4, 2017, Abbott Laboratories, an Illinois-based pharmaceutical and health care product development company, posted an article on their website titled "St. Jude Medical is Now Abbott". The article also had links to the Abbott CEO Miles D. White's LinkedIn post announcing the news as well as the press release published that same day. The article reads, "Abbott and St. Jude Medical are combining our strengths, our shared passion to achieve and our ability to change lives for the better, expanding Abbott's broad, market-leading portfolio of innovative medical devices, diagnostics, nutrition, and medicines." More detail was found in the press release about the two companies combining and the opportunity to develop breakthrough technology due to the merger. The press release also stated that "Jan. 4, 2017, was the last day of trading of St. Jude Medical shares on the New York Stock Exchange".
On Abbott's homepage, there is nothing specifically about SJM, however there is an article in their "Newsroom" section written January 2018 following up with the union one-year later. This article tells of the success the company has had after the acquisition like growing their "leadership in cardiovascular, with No. 1 and No. 2 positions in nearly every segment of the more than $30 billion market" and that "Abbott launched more than 20 products around the world in 2017, adding to its product portfolio of more than 1,500 diversified offerings". The article also talks about how the integration efforts between the two companies led to their recent success. Abbott's executive vice president Robert Ford is quoted saying, "I attribute our success squarely on the employees — from both organizations — who shared the vision and passion for what we could be together. We knew from the start we had a strong cultural fit, but I never cease to be amazed by the collaborative spirit and relentless enthusiasm of our combined teams to deliver for our customers."
SJM Global's domain name remains on their website but Abbott's logo is clearly located multiple times on the home screen. There is bold writing saying "life to the the fullest. St. Jude Medical is now Abbott". We found no information about why SJM took Abbott's name.

Acquisition of Baxalta by Shire

The largest example we found was the acquisition of Baxalta by Shire for $32 billion in January 2016, making it the largest acquisition of a Fortune 500 company in 2016. "Shire is a bio pharmaceutical company that researches and develops therapeutics for diseases and also offers patient advocacy and services" and since they operate on a global scale, much of their work is in the U.S. and their headquarters are in Dublin, Ireland. On June 3, 2016, Shire announced they completed the deal; in their press release, the heading states, "combination creates leading global biotechnology company projected to deliver double-digit top-line growth with over $20 billion in annual revenues by 2020". The document then goes into further detail about how the merger will bring growth the company and industry. On Shire's homepage there, there is nothing that mentions Baxalta. The press release and links to other articles related to the acquisition are found under the "Newsroom" section of their website. There was no information found on why Baxalta took Shire's name.

Acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group by TransCanada

On July 1, 2016, TransCanada, an "energy infrastructure firm" headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Canada published a press release announcing they completed the acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group for "$13 billion, including the assumption of approximately $2.8 billion of debt". A large portion of this announcement focused on exchange dates for subscription receipts. They announce that "Trading in Columbia shares on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) will be suspended effective as of the opening of trading today." Later in the press release, they say their attention will be on integration between the two businesses. The web address, will automatically redirect to TransCanada's website. On their homepage, there is nothing that displays CPG. However, there are articles in the "Stories" section of their website. One of these articles was about the one-year anniversary of the acquisition in July 2017. In the article, both TransCanada and CPG's natural gas portfolio before the acquisition is outlined as well as the portfolio after the two companies merged.
Before the acquisition, TransCanada "operated more than 67,00 kilometers of pipeline" and had "368 billion cubic feet of storage capacity". CPG "operated 24,00 kilometers of natural gas pipelines" and had "294 billion cubic feet of storage capacity". After the two companies merged, "TransCanada's natural gas pipelines assets grew by almost 40%", they had a total of "91,000 kilometer natural gas pipeline system", and a "combined portfolio of $23 billion in near-term projects". There was no information on why Columbia Pipeline Group took TransCanada's name.


Each of these three companies announced the acquisition in similar ways through a press release and/or article on their websites. Two companies, CPG and Baxalta, adopted their parent's website. However, CPG's web address is automatically redirected to TransCanada's website and Baxalta's website still appears but provides a link that redirects to Shire's website. SJM Global's domain still exists, but it blatantly says "St. Jude Medical is now Abbott" and clearly displays the Abbott logo. None of the parent companies marketed the company they acquired on their website's homepages but there were articles within their news sections about the acquisitions.