Mergers in the Swedish Press

University essay from Linköpings universitet/Ekonomiska institutionen; Linköpings universitet/Ekonomiska institutionen


Background: During the last decades, mergers and acquisitions have filled hundreds of book and newspaper pages. Despite the great number of research works in this field, there is no much agreement about the advantages of this strategy. Some writers point out that newspapers devote more space to mergers that fail. Taking into account the widespread influence of newspapers in modern society, they way in which they picture merger outcomes and their explanations for the success or failure of this strategy should not be disregarded. Purpose: Our purpose is to describe and analyze how different Swedish newspapers depict the outcomes of mergers. Procedure: We chose five relatively recent cross-border mergers that involved a Swedish company. We selected several relevant articles from two general newspapers, a business newspaper and a business magazine. Following an inductive approach, we identified the factors used in those articles to depict post merger outcomes and classified them into"hard"and"soft". Results: We found that newspapers usually evaluate the success or failure of merger taking into account the motives lying behindthe merger. Synergy is given the greatest importance among both the hard and soft factors used to depict merger outcomes. Culture and the human side of mergers are soft factors not frequently treated. Indeed, it is evident that newspapers recognize their importance for a successful merger. Newspapers give a picture of post merger outcomes that covers both"hard"and"soft"factors while the research works selected have more partial views.

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