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The micro-foundations of strategic ambidexterity: Chinese cross-border M&As, Mid-View thinking and integration management

Zhang, X., Liu, Y., Tarba, S. Y. and Giudice, M. D. (2020) The micro-foundations of strategic ambidexterity: Chinese cross-border M&As, Mid-View thinking and integration management. International Business Review, 29 (6). 101710. ISSN 0969-5931

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.ibusrev.2020.101710


Chinese cross-border mergers and acquisitions (M&As) display several unique properties in relation to the ways in which their international business operations are organised and managed. Their seemingly puzzling ‘light-touch’ integration approach can be significantly understood from a strategic ambidexterity perspective: on the one hand, the ‘light-touch’ enables the exploitation of the targets’ existing knowledge bases; on the other hand, elements of the ‘light-touch’ facilitate the exploration of the new knowledge arising from the collaboration between targets and acquirers. However, an important theoretical gap remains: why do Chinese companies deploy such a strategic ambidexterity approach in their post-acquisition integrations? This paper aims to fill this gap by proposing Mid-View thinking as a micro-foundation of strategic ambidexterity in integration management from a cultural and philosophical perspective. To illuminate our conceptualization and argument, we conducted qualitative in-depth interviews with CEOs/high-level managers of acquired German companies. Communication approach and organizational control—as two critical aspects in integration management—reveal how Mid-View thinking can serve as a micro-foundation of strategic ambidexterity. We conclude this paper by presenting its theoretical contributions, managerial implications, and future research directions.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Henley Business School > Leadership, Organisations and Behaviour
ID Code:92177

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