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The Restructuring of Technological Capabilities through Corporate Expansion


  • Grazia Santangelo
  • John Cantwell


This paper analyses the restructuring of technological capabilities following M&A-based growth in large industrial firms with a substantial technological knowledge base. In particular, we focus on the restructuring of those technological capabilities that are of a general purpose kind (namely ICT) or related to the core capabilities of a firm. We develop and test a conceptual framework grounded on a co-evolutionary view, that relates the motivations and environment for corporate expansion to the firm-specific pattern of restructuring in the composition of corporate technological capabilities. We find that distinct patterns of technological capability restructuring are associated with each combination of the motivations and environment for firm growth. In particular, inter-industry contexts reduce technological relatedness in market motivated expansions, while relatedness has also declined in more recent technology-motivated growth in general. The acquisition of ICT is common as well to both technology-motivated inter-industry deals and more recent market-motivated deals. However, we speculate that any similarities in the outcomes of these alternative motives for firm growth arise for quite different purposes.

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  • Grazia Santangelo & John Cantwell, 2010. "The Restructuring of Technological Capabilities through Corporate Expansion," DRUID Working Papers 10-18, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:aal:abbswp:10-18

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    1. Lars-Hendrik Röller & Johan Stennek & Frank Verboven, 2006. "Efficiency Gains from Mergers," Chapters,in: European Merger Control, chapter 3 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Teece, David J., 1980. "Economies of scope and the scope of the enterprise," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 1(3), pages 223-247, September.
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