Diversification Strategies and Firm Performance: A Sample Selection Approach
AbstractThis paper is based upon the assumption that firm profitability is determined by its degree of diversification which in turn is strongly related to the antecedent decision to carry out diversification activities. This calls for an empirical approach that permits the joint analysis of the three interrelated and consecutive stages of the overall diversification process: diversification decision, degree of diversification, and outcome of diversification. We apply parametric and semiparametric approaches to control for sample selection and endogeneity of diversification decision in both static and dynamic models. After controlling for industry fixed-effects, empirical evidence from firm-level data shows that diversification has a curvilinear effect on profitability: it improves firms’ profit up to a point, after which a further increase in diversification is associated with declining performance. This implies that firms should consider optimal levels of product diversification when they expand product offerings beyond their core business. Other worth-noting findings include: (i) factors stimulating firms to diversify do not necessarily encourage them to extend their diversification strategy; (ii) firms which are endowed with highly skilled human capital are likely to successfully exploit diversification as an engine of growth; (iii) while industry performance does not influence profitability of firms, it impacts their diversification decision and degree.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna in its series Working Papers with number wp896.
Date of creation: Jul 2013
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- L21 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Business Objectives of the Firm
- L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance
- C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
- C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-08-05 (All new papers)
- NEP-BEC-2013-08-05 (Business Economics)
- NEP-CSE-2013-08-05 (Economics of Strategic Management)
- NEP-EFF-2013-08-05 (Efficiency & Productivity)
- NEP-SBM-2013-08-05 (Small Business Management)
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