Post-Merger Restructuring and the Boundaries of the Firm

53 Pages Posted: 1 Sep 2008 Last revised: 21 Jul 2022

See all articles by Vojislav Maksimovic

Vojislav Maksimovic

University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business

Gordon M. Phillips

Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Nagpurnanand Prabhala

The Johns Hopkins Carey Business School

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Date Written: August 2008

Abstract

Mergers and acquisitions are a fast way for a firm to grow. Using plant-level data, we examine how firms redraw their boundaries after acquisitions. We find that there is a large amount of restructuring in a short period following mergers. Acquirers sell 27% and close 19% of acquired plants within three years of the acquisition. Plants in the target's peripheral divisions, especially in industries in which asset values are increasing, and in industries in which the acquirer does not have a comparative advantage, are more likely to be sold by the acquirer. Acquirers with skill in running their peripheral divisions tend to retain more acquired plants. Plants retained by acquirers increase in productivity whereas sold plants do not. The extent of post-merger restructuring activities and their cross-sectional variation do not support an empire building explanation for mergers. Acquirers readjust their firm boundaries in ways that are consistent with the exploitation of their comparative advantage across industries.

Suggested Citation

Maksimovic, Vojislav and Phillips, Gordon M. and Prabhala, Nagpurnanand, Post-Merger Restructuring and the Boundaries of the Firm (August 2008). NBER Working Paper No. w14291, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1261477

Vojislav Maksimovic

University of Maryland - Robert H. Smith School of Business ( email )

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HOME PAGE: http://scholar.rhsmith.umd.edu/vmax/home

Gordon M. Phillips (Contact Author)

Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business ( email )

Hanover, NH 03755
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Cambridge, MA 02138
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Nagpurnanand Prabhala

The Johns Hopkins Carey Business School ( email )

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Baltimore, MD 21202
United States
+1 410 234 4532 (Phone)

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