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The Choice among Acquisitions, Alliances, and Divestitures

Belén Villalonga and Anita M. McGahan
Strategic Management Journal
Vol. 26, No. 13 (Dec., 2005), pp. 1183-1208
Published by: Wiley
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20142305
Page Count: 26
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The Choice among Acquisitions, Alliances, and Divestitures
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Abstract

This paper investigates how firms choose among acquisitions, alliances, and divestitures when they decide to expand or contract their boundaries. The dataset covers 9276 deals announced and completed by 86 members of the Fortune 100 between 1990 and 2000. Our findings support explanations based on resources, transaction costs, internalization, organizational learning, social embeddedness, asymmetric information, and real options, and suggest that these theories are highly related and complementary. We find less consistent support for theories based on agency costs and asset indivisibilities. The strong role of firm attributes explains in part why firms may pre-specify whether they will pursue acquisitions, alliances, or divestitures as part of their corporate strategies.

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