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Are Acquisitions Worthwhile? An Empirical Study of the Post-Acquisition Performance of Privately Held Belgian Companies

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  • Hubert Ooghe

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  • Elisabeth Laere
  • Tine Langhe

Abstract

Few studies have addressed the performance of smaller unquoted companies involved in acquisitions, especially in Continental European countries. Therefore this study addresses the post-acquisition financial characteristics of privately held companies involved in 143 Belgian acquisitions between 1992 and 1994. Specifically, this paper examines the financial performance of the acquiring firm after the acquisition, using statistical analysis of industry-adjusted variables. Our findings show that following the acquisition, the profitability, the solvency and the liquidity of most of the combined companies decline. This decline is also reflected in the failure prediction scores. With respect to the added value, acquisitions are found to be accompanied by increases in the labour productivity, but this is caused by the general improvement of gross added value per employee of Belgian companies in the last 10 years. So it seems that, contrary to the general expectations and beliefs, acquisitions usually do not seem to improve the acquirer’s financial performance. Copyright Springer 2006

Suggested Citation

  • Hubert Ooghe & Elisabeth Laere & Tine Langhe, 2006. "Are Acquisitions Worthwhile? An Empirical Study of the Post-Acquisition Performance of Privately Held Belgian Companies," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 27(2), pages 223-243, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:sbusec:v:27:y:2006:i:2:p:223-243
    DOI: 10.1007/s11187-006-0011-1
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Hulle, Cynthia Van & Vermaelen, Theo & Wouters, Paul de, 1991. "Regulation, taxes and the market for corporate control in Belgium," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 15(6), pages 1143-1170, December.
    2. Charles Brown & James L. Medoff, 1988. "The Impact of Firm Acquisitions on Labor," NBER Chapters,in: Corporate Takeovers: Causes and Consequences, pages 9-32 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Jan Camerlynck & Hubert Ooghe & Tine Langhe, 2005. "Pre-Acquisition Profile of Privately Held Companies Involved in Take-Overs: An Empirical Study," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 24(2), pages 169-186, March.
    4. A Cosh & P Guest & A Hughes, 2001. "Managerial Discretion and Takeover Performance," Working Papers wp216, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge.
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    Cited by:

    1. D. Van den Poel, 2003. "Predicting Mail-Order Repeat Buying. Which Variables Matter?," Review of Business and Economic Literature, KU Leuven, Faculty of Economics and Business, Review of Business and Economic Literature, vol. 0(3), pages 371-404.
    2. Yan Alperovych & Georges Hübner, 2013. "Incremental impact of venture capital financing," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 651-666, October.
    3. Vermeire, Bert & Gellynck, Xavier, 2007. "Contribution of Cluster Relations to Food Competitiveness in the EU," 2007 1st Forum, February 15-17, 2007, Innsbruck, Austria 6583, International European Forum on Innovation and System Dynamics in Food Networks.
    4. Alperovych, Yan & Hübner, Georges, 2011. "Explaining returns on venture capital backed companies: Evidence from Belgium," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 277-295, September.
    5. Zélia Serrasqueiro & Paulo Maçãs Nunes, 2008. "Performance and size: empirical evidence from Portuguese SMEs," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 195-217, August.
    6. Eda ORUÇ ERDOĞAN & Murat ERDOĞAN, 2014. "Effect of Acquisition Activity on the Financial Indicators of Companies: An Application in BIST," International Journal of Business and Social Research, MIR Center for Socio-Economic Research, vol. 4(7), pages 17-22, July.

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