Good Merger Index

The Good Merger Index is our annual survey of consolidation activity in the not-for-profit sector, the first of its kind. It is intended both to help individual organisations understand more about what can be a sensitive issue and to inform debate around mergers and partnerships sector-wide.


The very latest Good Merger Index finds that charity mergers overall remain rare, with 142 organisations undertaking 70 mergers in 2016/17. However, it also uncovers strong examples of ‘hotspots’ in the sector responding to the need for change – federations, supported housing providers and mental health charities – and highlights two emerging developments in the environment for charity mergers.


The second edition looks at not-for-profit merger trends from May 2014 to April 2015, with a review of 129 charities undertaking 61 mergers in the period. We also begin tracking financial drivers behind charity mergers, ascertaining that a majority of the smaller ‘transferor’ charities were in deficit by the time they sought merger, and in a special feature look at 8 housing association mergers and draw comparison with practice in the charity sector.


Our third Index covers 116 organisations undertaking 54 mergers between May 2015 to April 2016. In a special feature, we also return to the top 10 largest mergers we highlighted in the first Index (2013/14) for a look at their early progress, and in response to the static level of merger activity the report identifies, we also explore in depth the barriers to merger in the not-for-profit sector and propose possible policy solutions to them.


In this first edition of the Good Merger Index, we provide a snapshot of consolidation trends from January 2013 to April 2014, with a review of 189 organisations undertaking mergers in that period. The report touches on sensitivities around language and branding, and a framework is included describing different types of not-for-profit deal: Merger, Takeover, Subsidiary Model, Group Structure and Exchange of Assets/Services.

Eastside Primetimers

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