Intellectual property rights and cross-border mergers and acquisitions

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

24 Scopus Citations
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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)360-377
Journal / PublicationJournal of Corporate Finance
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2017


We investigate the role of intellectual property rights protection in cross-border merger and acquisition (M&A) activity. We document a significant increase in inbound cross-border M&As after a country implements reforms that strengthen local intellectual property rights. Importantly, we find that intellectual property rights have an impact on merger activity only in industries that are more intellectual capital-intensive, and when the target country has weaker intellectual property rights protection than the acquirer country. We also find that synergy gains in cross-border M&As are positively related to reforms of intellectual property rights. These results are consistent with the notion that acquirers are concerned about the local protection of intellectual capital when considering foreign acquisitions, and care the most when the target firm is in an industry that uses intellectual property intensely and in a country that has lesser-developed protections that their own country does.

Research Area(s)

  • Cross-border mergers and acquisitions, Intellectual property rights