Ownership similarity in mergers and acquisitions target selection

We study how ownership similarity between two firms affects the likelihood of an acquisition between them. Assortative matching arguments suggest that similarity between acquiring and target firms can encourage acquisition behavior, since more similar partners can better understand one another and combine resources in a more efficient way. Previous research has confirmed this expectation focusing on traits related to industry, strategy, and technology. We contribute to this literature by examining similarity in the type of dominant owner. We hypothesize and find evidence in a sample of 14,000 Italian companies that acquisitions are more likely to occur among firms with similar owners.


Emanuele L. M. Bettinazzi, Danny Miller, Mario Daniele Amore, and Guido Carbetta. 2018. Ownership similarity in mergers and acquisitions target selection, Strategic Organization. First published 24 September 2018: http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1476127018801294

2018-10-02T15:07:34+00:00 By |

About the Author:

Emanuele Bettinazi
I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Strategy and Organization at EMLYON Business School and a proud member of the of the STORM Research center.

I obtained my Phd in Management in 2016 from Bocconi University. In 2010 I also obtained my MRes in Business Administration from ESADE Business School.

Most of my research is on corporate development strategies, M&A, Stakeholder theory, firm’s sustainability and organizational learning. I am particularly interested in the influence of different stakeholder groups on firms’ capabilities to develop their business and to choose between different development strategies. I’ve published in some international journals including Global strategy Journal, Strategic Management Journal and the Academy of Management Best Paper Proceedings.

Between 2011 and 2016 I also had the chance to coordinate the GOLDEN Observatory, a research program aimed at monitoring firm’s evolution towards more sustainable enterprise models.

Before joining the academia I was a consultant for small financial boutique focused on cross-border M&A activities. I devote most of free-time to my greatest passions: cooking (of course… I am Italian) and watching movies (my all-time favorite movie is Blade Runner).

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