DOI: 10.1177/21582440231216188 ISSN: 2158-2440

Chinese Multinationals’ Dynamic Integrations in the Developed Market: From a Resource Dependence Perspective

Yanan Yang, Christoph Lütge
  • General Social Sciences
  • General Arts and Humanities

Integrating the developed-market resources after acquisitions is a crucial tool for Chinese multinational enterprises (CMNEs) to accelerate industrial high-quality development. However, existing theories have scarce thorough explanations of the dynamic mechanism of CMNEs’ post-merger integrating resources. Our research aims at disclosing CMNEs’ post-merger integration (PMI) long-term dynamics under resource relatedness changes. We applied a multiple-case study with four typical CMNEs’ German-market PMI cases and proposed a theoretical framework based on a coding analysis of 38 interviews. Our findings highlight that: CMNEs change initial gentle integrations (partnering/preservation) to balance dependence when pre-merger resources complementary decreases with similarity increasing, or to extreme dependence when pre-merger resources similarity continually increases to extremely high. Pre-merger resource relatedness basics and later changes and CMNEs’ dynamic capability (threat and development potentials’ perception capabilities and utilization capability) are crucial factors in promoting CMNEs’ PMI changes. Our originality lies in that we consider the interactions resource relatedness changes and CMNEs’ PMI dynamics, strongly replenishing the deficiency of current PMI dynamic studies that lack considerations of resource relatedness changing; also, we simultaneously consider the two facets of dependence asymmetry and joint dependence such that broadened the application of resource dependence theory (RDT) in PMI studies. Our study offers managerial insights into CMNEs’ development leapfrog through acquisitions in developed markets that CMNEs should focus on the vital role of inter-firm resource relatedness changing. Initial gentle integration can be deepened when original resource backgrounds become more similar but should be cautious of the effect of power imbalance and selfish actions.

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