Recently, Japanese commercial banks have experienced increased merger and acquisition (M&A) activity. M&As allow rapid downsizing and increased scale economies, while avoiding massive layoffs. Faced with the pressures of globalization and a difficult domestic economic environment, some Japanese banks appear to have shifted their operational focus from developing growth-enabling core competencies to reducing organizational costs. Keiretsu relationships are changing accordingly, with individual groups adapting in different ways. Most Japanese banks experienced extensive M&A activity at earlier points in their corporate histories. The recent flurry of M&As in the banking sector is nothing new, but rather a resurgence of past practices.
Rose, E.L. and Ito, K. (2004), "M&As IN THE JAPANESE BANKING INDUSTRY: THE MORE THINGS CHANGE?", Roehl, T. and Bird, A. (Ed.) Japanese Firms in Transition: Responding to the Globalization Challenge (Advances in International Management, Vol. 17), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 139-157. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0747-7929(04)17006-6
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