A note using mergers and acquisitions to gain competitive advantage in the United States in the case of Latin American MNCs

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Elsevier Science Inc.
The "new" economic and business climate in Latin America, fostered by multilateral trade agreements such as NAFTA, MERCOSUR, and the ANDEAN Pact, suggests that Latin American (LA) firms must become more aggressive and competitive in order to survive. Foreign direct investment in the form of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) is often an effective way of competing in a tough global environment. Using transactions data collected from Security Data Company's Worldwide Merger and Acquisition database, this paper analyzes the relative involvement of firms from five LA countries (Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and Venezuela) in acquiring targets in the United States of America. Transaction characteristics examined and summarized include the annual distribution (1985-1998) of the deals, the industrial sector of the target firm, the form of acquisition method used, and the form of ownership of the target firm. The trends are analyzed, and implications for managers are indicated.
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