Inderscience Publishers

How managers construe risk in business acquisitions

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Business acquisitions are among the most important strategic investment decisions. Within a management control framework, there is a need for analysis techniques that reflect on experience and utilise organisational learning in future decisions. This paper provides an insight into managers' perceptions of the risk involved in acquisitions, as part of the learning process in building expertise in an organisation embarking on an acquisitions strategy. The paper reports on the results of a case study which elicited managers' risk constructs, in order to assess the risk profile of proposed business acquisitions. It uses personal construct theory with a group of managers to map the risks involved in acquisitions as an aid to future decision making.

Keywords: business acquisitions, cognition, risk management, return, strategy, strategic investment, management control, organisational learning, personal construct theory

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