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Dynamics of external growth in SMEs: A process model of acquisition capabilities emergence


  • Carlo Salvato
  • Ugo Lassini
  • Johan Wiklund


Acquisition growth is not a common theme in entrepreneurship research. Entrepreneurial growth has traditionally been addressed as organic growth, i.e. as internal expansion through the extension of existing operations and internally induced process and product innovations. We contend that acquisition growth may generate entrepreneurial benefits over the long run, which may not be present in organic growth or green-field establishments. In fact, acquisition can be a way to release entrepreneurial activities in a firm. Acquisitions may revitalize a firm and improve its ability to anticipate or to react adequately to changing external conditions. We contend that these positive outcomes will only accrue to acquiring organizations when acquisition growth is coupled with the development of acquisition capabilities, i.e., with the accumulation, storage, and exploitation of fresh organizational knowledge.

Suggested Citation

  • Carlo Salvato & Ugo Lassini & Johan Wiklund, 2007. "Dynamics of external growth in SMEs: A process model of acquisition capabilities emergence," Schmalenbach Business Review (sbr), LMU Munich School of Management, vol. 59(3), pages 282-305, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:sbr:abstra:v:59:y:2007:i:3:p:282-305

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:mth:csbm88:v:3:y:2016:i:2:p:122-145 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Catherine Thevenard-Puthod & Christian Picard, 2015. "Diversité des stratégies de croissance de l'entreprise artisanale et profil du dirigeant," Post-Print hal-01548383, HAL.
    3. Łapuńka Iwona & Pisz Iwona, 2014. "Knowledge Management in the Project Life Cycle - Initial Research on Polish Smes," Foundations of Management, De Gruyter Open, vol. 6(2), pages 67-82, December.
    4. Grundström, Christina & Öberg, Christina & Öhrwall Rönnbäck, Anna, 2012. "Family-owned manufacturing SMEs and innovativeness: A comparison between within-family successions and external takeovers," Journal of Family Business Strategy, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 162-173.


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