Now Buffett can have his fill of condiments for those burger plates. His Berkshire Hathaway has teamed with Jorge Lemann’s 3G Capital to buy HJ Heinz Co. for $23.3 billion, one of the richest deals ever in the food industry according to the Wall Street Journal. Sold in 200 countries, the wide array of brands include Heinz ketchup and sauces, Ore-Ida french fries, Bagel Bites mini-pizzas and even Weight Watchers SmartOnes meals.
Buffett, 82, was seeking deals after his company amassed a cash pile of $45 billion. Buffett has bet big on food before through equity investments in Coca-Cola and purchases of See’s Candies, Mars and Dairy Queen. Now he can add another Logo Deal: an iconic ketchup maker that traces its roots to the 1860s.
How to Pursue a Logo Deal Strategy
Regardless of your business, there is a Logo Deal Strategy opportunity for you somewhere. If that’s the end you’re shooting for, pick your ultimate target. Make it a company that is big in size and big in name. There is nothing wrong with making it the richest family in town or one of the top 100 companies in the world. That target is yours to envision and name.
Here is a path and a plan to get there, based on our book “How to Close a Deal Like Warren Buffett.”
First, think of those companies with whom you would like to do business. If you’re in the food business like an up-and-coming Heinz, for example, that would be Walmart, Aldi, or Kroger. But it’s extraordinarily difficult to start with one of those companies. You have to work your way up to them.
Look for your strongest potential prospects among companies with the following characteristics:
1. Big enough to be your next big deal financially
2. Innovative enough to listen to—and buy—your solution
3. Stable enough to follow through full implementation
Second, you need to start with what your prospect needs. Research why they should make a deal with you. Amazingly Buffett makes deals with companies at a lower price than others are willing to pay. Why? He understands what is important to the other side, other than money, and addresses those needs. Start building a demonstrable capacity and significance in critical areas to support your claims and effectiveness to your largest opportunities.
Third, start from where you are. This works like the domino effect. To get to the final domino in the string, you have to tip the first one. To do that, you have to start from where you are. What clients do you have currently and what do you demonstrate in your work with them that can get you to your first domino in the string?
The Logo Deal Strategy is one of the most intentional approaches to true business development that we know. It puts you in the driver’s seat for reaching your ultimate goals. The alternative that we see too often is that we call on everyone, and we hope that the big one will come in. And that’s not a strategy.
Warren Buffett didn’t care that Heinz was an iconic brand, he made the deal because it fit the parameters of the kind of deal he was looking for. In the end, you should always go after the right deal, not just the size of the company.