Mergers and acquisitions as multitude of processes

A review of qualitative research

Authored by: Michael Grant , Lars Frimanson , Fredrik Nilsson

The Routledge Companion to Mergers and Acquisitions

Print publication date:  July  2015
Online publication date:  June  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415704663
eBook ISBN: 9780203761885
Adobe ISBN: 9781134497652


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A conventional idea in merger and acquisition (M&A) research is that M&A phenomena can be thought of as a linear process (Risberg 1999; Calipha et al. 2010). This idea is evident from two terms commonly used to describe M&A processes: the pre-merger phase and the post-merger phase (cf. Shrivastava 1986). Events and actions in the pre-merger phase typically relate to antecedents of M&A and transaction activities such as due diligence, valuation and negotiations. Post-merger events and actions often address integration and restructuring issues. These events and actions are complex because M&A phenomena involve several stakeholders who have different and sometimes changing expectations and motives (Anderson et al. 2013). Moreover, each M&A process involves unique cultural, organizational and social dimensions (Meglio and Risberg 2010). This makes it difficult to build a generic M&A process theory (Cartwright et al. 2012), tempting us to suggest that theorizing based on a single research tradition will never help us understand all the empirical complexities of M&A processes.

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