Success and failure in technology acquisitions: Lessons for buyers and sellers

Melissa Graebner, Kathleen Eisenhardt, Philip Roundy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Technology acquisitions can benefit firms by providing valuable resources, increasing market power, and initiating strategic renewal. Yet despite these opportunities, technology acquisitions often present a significant challenge for both buyers and sellers. In this article, we review the research on technology acquisitions and outline what is known and what remains to be studied. First, we examine firms' motivations for engaging in technology acquisitions. Second, we explore the features and challenges that make technology acquisitions unique. Third, we summarize the research on how both buyers and sellers can improve the performance of technology acquisitions. Fourth, we propose a research agenda to address unanswered questions and emerging issues related to technology acquisitions, placing particular emphasis on cross-border deals and the effects of acquisition activity on an industry's competitive dynamics. Copyright by the Academy of Management; all rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)73-92
Number of pages20
JournalAcademy of Management Perspectives
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Strategy and Management
  • Marketing


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