Corporate diversification and value creation: Should Russian firms diversify?
Researchers have long tried to define the impact of corporate diversification on firm value. Academic papers mainly concentrate on the effects of corporate diversification in mature markets while its consequences in emerging capital markets are less explored. This article presents the results of an empirical analysis of corporate diversification strategies of a sample of companies from BRIC countries that expanded via acquisitions during 2000–2013. We contribute to the existing literature by examining the effects of corporate diversification on firm value during the pre- and post-crisis periods. In line with other studies, we distinguish between related and unrelated diversification and in contrast to them we single out and separately analyze horizontal, conglomerate and vertical acquisitions. Based on a sample of 319 deals initiated by companies from BRIC countries, we found positive (3.32% and 9.01%) and statistically significant cumulative abnormal returns for conglomerate acquisitions during the pre- and post-crisis periods, correspondingly. We also found that the market reacts positively and statistically significant to the announcements of horizontal and vertical integration only during the pre-crisis period.
The level of corporate diversification is one of the most important decisions that management makes. The diversification strategy has its benefits and costs. According to the principles of corporate finance the efficiency of diversification strategy is always assessed by its impact on shareholder value. The article discusses the main value-creating and value-destroying drivers of diversified firms.