The Innovation Impact
Edited by Bruno Cassiman and Massimo G. Colombo
7. The sample of M&A: descriptive statistics Massimo G. Colombo and Paola Garrone 7.1 INTRODUCTION This chapter illustrates the main characteristics of the mergers and acquisitions (M&A) sample that oﬀers the basis for an empirical analysis in Chapter 8. The following sections of the chapter will analyse the sample distribution along a restricted number of dimensions. A fruitful departure point is a synthetic discussion of the distinctive characteristics of our sample with respect to previous empirical analyses. The existing large scale studies have enlightened selected aspects of the relationship between M&A and research and development (R&D) activities, but they fail to converge to a consistent empirical pattern (see Chapter 4). We contend that a major limitation of this research stream is its reliance on public innovation indicators at the ﬁrm level, such as annual R&D expenditures, patent or new product counts (e.g. Ravenscraft and Scherer 1987, Hall 1990, Hitt et al. 1991, Hitt et al. 1996 and Ahuja and Katila 2001). First, acquisitive events may aﬀect single business units of the merging ﬁrms; in addition, they are likely to act diﬀerently at diﬀerent stages of the innovation process. In this respect, standardized innovation measures may allow estimates of changes occurring in the ﬁrm-level R&D outputs and inputs, but they cannot illustrate how M&A modify the R&D activities within the ﬁrm. Secondly, even in the class of horizontal M&A (the most widely explored type), individual deals may di...
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