Review of Managerial Science

, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp 75–116

Do synergies exist in related acquisitions? A meta-analysis of acquisition studies

Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s11846-009-0026-5

Cite this article as:
Homberg, F., Rost, K. & Osterloh, M. Rev Manag Sci (2009) 3: 75. doi:10.1007/s11846-009-0026-5


Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) aim to increase the wealth of shareholders of the acquiring company, in particular by creating synergies. It is often assumed that relatedness is a source of synergies. Our study distinguishes between business, cultural, technological, and size relatedness. It discusses the reasons why these different forms of relatedness can lead to an acquisition success and we conduct a meta-analysis of 67 prior M&A studies. Results indicate that positive effects can be expected under specific conditions only and have a limited overall impact on acquisition success. A moderator analysis finds that synergies stemming from relatedness depend on industry-, country-, and investor-characteristics.


Mergers and acquisitions Meta-analysis Business relatedness Size relatedness Technological relatedness Cultural relatedness Synergies 

JEL Classification

G34 M19 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.IOU Institute for Organization and Administrative Science, University of ZurichZurichSwitzerland
  2. 2.CREMA, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the ArtsZurichSwitzerland

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