Knowledge Matters, but Culture is King (In Technology Acquisitions)
40 Pages Posted: 19 Jun 2010 Last revised: 13 Jun 2014
Date Written: February 16, 2011
Research consistently identifies knowledge and culture as critical antecedents to success in focused technology acquisitions. Because such studies are typically observational, these constructs have been considered independently and within limited parametric values. Incorporating an agent-based simulation expanding on the March (1991) exploration-exploitation model, we show that there are marginally decreasing returns on knowledge appropriation, but non-decreasing linear returns on cultural appropriation. Our findings also show that combinations of appropriation strategies yield equivalent performance benefits. Gains are improved by insulating retained employees from any exploitive cultural influences. We confirm prior evidence of the “dual-edged” sword effects of cultural appropriation of acquiring underperforming firms.
Keywords: Mergers, Acquisitions, Organizational Learning, Knowledge, Culture, Exploration, Exploitation, Simulations, Agent-Based Models
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