At the end of 2013, GardaWorld announced an industry first and game-changing acquisition of 32 cash vaults and 1,100 highly trained employees, which helped propel us to become the number one cash services provider in North America. This acquisition also cemented our ongoing and strategic partnership with Bank of America.
Just over one year later, many in the industry are curious about the acquisition and the transition. Did this event cause the demise of both GardaWorld and Bank of America as some predicted? Were customers negatively impacted? Was this a good move for the entire industry?
Update: Both organizations are performing better than the high expectations that were set! Additionally, other financial institutions are realizing the model that was created by GardaWorld and Bank of America can have a positive financial and customer impact to their organizations and are exploring their options.
How did we do it?
You may not know that GardaWorld’s founder, Stephan Cretier, is a former minor league baseball umpire. That’s why I like to compare our strategy for success to a baseball team. You could have a Babe Ruth batting, but no matter how good the guy on the plate is, you’re never going to win without the discipline, infrastructure and teamwork to get you there.
From day one, we set a gold standard for business integration. We wanted to achieve flawless execution and operational and system platform consistency, with a strong focus on information security and client service excellence.
On the first day of the transaction, we dispatched our cash vault leaders and teams to validate cash vault inventories, building security, and conducted employee on-boarding—all completed in 48 hours. On the following Monday, GardaWorld began processing at all 32 locations and most importantly, Bank of America clients had a seamless customer experience!
Site-by-site system conversion: A year-long, methodical process.
From that Monday on, we began converting each site from the Bank of America cash vault system platform to the GardaWorld platform.
Converting a site requires coordination from many areas within Bank of America and GardaWorld. As you can imagine, each market has different requirements, different customer service delivery expectations and nuances that require a deep dive analysis before converting to ensure we maintain the goal of providing a seamless customer experience to Bank of America clients.
Our transition execution strategy is to assign GardaWorld leaders to each work stream. These leaders were selected based on their skill set and subject matter expertise required to drive the transition, end-to-end, for their work stream. Additionally, we have a program manager that coordinates and drives each workgroup to ensure synchronization occurs both internally and externally, without our Bank of America partners.
A true home run
GardaWorld and Bank of America really hit it out of the park with this partnership. We’ve strategically positioned ourselves as the largest vault provider in North America while achieving significant impact on economies of scale and cost savings. To date, we’ve fully converted 15 of the 32 locations while learning invaluable lessons that will aid in preparation for future partnerships of this kind. Together, we have changed the game and revolutionized relationships within our industry.