Acquisitions and the outcome have very much to do with buying them at the right price.Most buyers have definite plans for how to pay down debt, and reduce costs, making the combined businesses more profitable--provided the price was right.Paying down debt usually means selling some of the acquired company's assets. Reducing costs depends largely on the synergies involved. Most companies have overhead in various functions such as purchasing, accounting, legal, IT, etc. Often headcount can be reduced or junior people can be hired to assist sr personnel.Where excess capacity shows up, sometimes facilities can be closed or sold, and profitable product lines moved.An acquiring company that does it well can grow by series of acquisitions provided they can continue to find undervalued companies to acquire.High growth businesses tend to be expensive. That means often you buy a mediocre company and rejuvenate it. Sometimes you find good business opportunities within the mix that were overlooked or underfunded. They may blossom with attention. More often a diamond in the rough must be acquired and polished.