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Keywords:

  • G34;
  • L13;
  • L21;
  • L22;
  • Q13
  • Mergers and acquisitions;
  • Cooperatives;
  • Yardstick of competition hypothesis;
  • Dairyworld;
  • Agrifoods International Cooperative Ltd;
  • Saputo

Abstract

This article examines the takeover of a cooperative (Dairyworld) by an investor-owned firm (Saputo) that was not previously present in the industry, determines if this takeover generates greater returns for the investor-owned firms (IOF), and on the basis of this evidence makes some inferences about the behavior and performance of cooperatives and IOFs. The empirical evidence strongly supports the conclusion that Saputo's stock price rose with its takeover announcement. This outcome is consistent with a number of explanations, including that Saputo was unaffected by hubris, a factor often suggested as the reason that many firms overbid when they undertake acquisitions. Dairyworld's poor liquidity and capital shortage problems, as well as a limited number of suitors, may have weakened its bargaining position in its dealings with Saputo. The observed increase in Saputo's stock price is also consistent with the possibility that, by taking over a cooperative, Saputo was able to decrease competition and thus increase its profits. A fruitful area for future research would be a rigorous theoretical and empirical determination of the impact that these various factors have on acquisition profitability. Such analysis is required before inferences about the behavior and performance of cooperatives and IOFs can be fully answered.