The speed of integration has been a salient and longstanding topic in the literature on managing mergers and acquisitions. Yet over the decades, speed has also been the subject of extensive debate. While many have advocated for fast integration, others have recommended a more measured pace. In this chapter, the authors reflect on the discussion by canvasing the variety of views on the speed of integration. The work is positioned at the nexus of the literature on mergers with that on stakeholders, in particular its attention to urgency in stakeholder management. It approaches urgency in mergers and acquisitions as a “dilemma of stake,” a new lens on a well-established but challenging topic. The study draws on ethnographic research to examine accounts of speed of integration in a New Zealand public sector merger. The chapter juxtaposes varied views on the topic against the respective arguments within the merger literature. It examines the overarching themes of “go slow” and the “need for speed” by attending to the tensions between a prosocial service ethos on the one hand and a managerialist ethos on the other. The explication of the respective dilemmas of stake shows how participants articulate their views on urgency both in terms of its effects on their individual professional role, their own stake, as well as in terms of the effects on employees as internal stakeholders. The analysis also explores the role of internal and external context in shaping the views on urgency in merger integration. The work concludes by outlining an agenda for future research.
Riad, S. and Daellenbach, U. (2023), "Reflections on Urgency in Mergers and Acquisitions: Views, Reviews, and Directions for Future Research", Cooper, C.L. and Finkelstein, S. (Ed.) Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions (Advances in Mergers and Acquisitions, Vol. 22), Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 113-129. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1479-361X20230000022008
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