Post-acquisition integration of emerging market multinational corporations: a research agenda

Ying Zhang, Etieno Enang, Harry Sminia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)
161 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose – Mergers and acquisitions being done by emerging market multinational corporations (EMNCs) increasingly attract scholarly attention. However, conclusions concerning the nature and the theoretical underpinnings of EMNCs’ post-acquisition integration vary significantly, calling for an assessment of the state of affairs in this field. This paper aims to critically review the extant studies on EMNCs’ post-acquisition integration and to make a comparison with advanced economy multinational corporations’ (AMNCs’) post-acquisition integration, in order to formulate an agenda for future research.

Design/methodology/approach – A sample of papers from 21 leading journals in the fields of international business, management, human resource management and strategy published between 1991 and March 2018 are included in the literature review. Qualitative content analysis was conducted.

Findings – The topics are clustered into the four themes of strategies and processes, influencing factors, acquisition performance and antecedents of post-acquisition integration of EMNCs. The literature on EMNCs and AMNCs converges with regard to the broad methodological and theoretical approaches that have been adopted. Yet, EMNCs and AMNCs diverge on the detailed strategies and behavioral patterns of postacquisition integration, mostly as a consequence of country of origin factors.

Originality/value – The paper identifies a number of deficiencies within existing research and suggests how they can be addressed in future research. By doing so, the paper deepens the argumentation of the third camp in the “Goldilocks debate” (Cuervo-Cazurra, 2012) arguing that the phenomenon of post-acquisition of EMNCs is “just right” for theory extension and development.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages30
JournalMultinational Business Review
Publication statusPublished - 18 Dec 2018


  • emerging market multinational corporations
  • mergers and acquisitions (M&A)
  • post-acquisition integration
  • liability of emergingness


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