Kauppatieteellinen tiedekunta, 2016
Master's Degree Programme in International Business
Companies that undertake cross-border acquisitions have to face several managerial challenges and achieving success has proven to be a very complex task. An effective management of these transactions can lead companies to gain access to new markets, acquire strategic assets, as well as to improve portfolio diversification and increase efficiency. One of the most challenging phases of the acquisition process is the post-acquisition integration (PMI), which involves a variety of activities that consist in managing organizational operations and resources, in order to achieve a set of organizational goals. This thesis reviews the extant literature by providing fundamental concepts of mergers and acquisitions (M&A), putting a special emphasis on the motives that drives the choice of resorting to acquisition. The core theme of the study is analysed under several dimensions, such as integration approach, focus, level and speed of integration. Moreover, socio-cultural and organizational integration are investigated with the aim of including critical human and cultural aspects. Accordingly, the role of culture in the integration and the impact of integration performance on the overall acquisition outcomes is studied. Empirical evidences are collected through three semi-structured interviews with managers of the acquiring firms who played a crucial role in the integration process. In particular, the selected empirical cases show Italian firms acquiring in the USA, UK and France, which are the top three target countries in the outward Italian M&A market. Findings shed light on the integration strategies Italian firms choose to implement, how challenges during the process are managed, as well as how managers evaluate the performance and perceive cultural differences.
Cross-border acquisition, post-acquisition integration, integration performance, cultural differences, Italy, USA, UK, France.