Citation Note

Based on field research; 21 pages.

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The case enables students to: (1) understand the business rationale behind mergers, (2) develop insight into the complexity of merging two complex organizations, (3) identify (internal and external) stakeholder challenges facing a merger, (4) develop appropriate strategic steps to bring the merger to a success, and (5) realize/comprehend how to create understanding, acceptance and support among internal and external stakeholders around the merger.


The case shows how two banks, the Dutch Postbank and ING Bank, merged into one bank by creating stakeholder understanding in order to expand in a highly competitive financial market.


The case shows how two banks, the Dutch Postbank and ING, merged into one bank to expand in a highly competitive financial market. Over the period of four years (2007 - 2010), the project team of the merger (TANGO) faced significant challenges, not only on an organizational level (building understanding and acceptance among employees, integrating different IT systems, laying off employees), but also on a customer level (creating understanding and acceptance among consumers; establishing a new brand) as well as on a socio-political level (dealing with the demands of unions, the Dutch central bank DNB and the supervisory organization AFM). Successful dealing with these different types of challenges was critical to the success of the merger. The case describes the strategic steps that the TANGO team took to steer the merger to a success: one of the strategic steps, as the case focuses on, is how the company created understanding and acceptance around the merger among key stakeholders (employees, clients, regulators etc).


The case is suitable for MBA, and other business students, as well as executives and managers involved in strategic change, stakeholder management, corporate communication, (internal/external) branding.

Case Study