This study ascertains the influence of merger and acquisition as a growth and survival strategy. The crisis facing so many corporate firms as a result of capital inadequacy has led to the collapsing of so many firms. As a result, it is the objectives of this study to evaluate the impact of merger and acquisition on growth and survival of corporate firms using banks as study, to ascertain whether the banks have grown and survived as result of merger and acquisition.  A survey research method was applied. Data were collected through primary and secondary sources. The population samples were drawn from two groups i.e. Access Bank and First City Monument Bank.  A judgmental sampling technique in which 45 and 50 of each samples were selected was adopted for convenience sake. Data were analyzed using “Z” test as an inferential statistics for testing of differences in perception of participants on merger and acquisition as a means of growth and survival and improving its earning per share. Ratios of the banks used for study were employed for evaluation purposes. A regression analysis was adopted to express the quantitative relationship among variables i.e. Return on Capital Employed (ROCE) and Earning per Share (EPS), used in this study -the financial ratios for pre-merger and post-merger. The result obtained after the analysis showed that merger and acquisition act as a means for growth and survival and improvement of earning per share of the banks. Based on this, the study recommends that firms should re-train and re-educate its employees on the new company’s culture so as to ensure a smooth transition and improved processes

  • Background of Study

Growth is necessary to determine the performance and continuity of any business organization. Without growth, a business can hardly survive and attract funds from shareholders.
The use of merger and acquisition as a growth and survival strategy in an economy like Nigeria appears to be on the increase in recent times. This is not surprising, considering the large number of business failures as result of adverse micro and macro economic climate (Igweike, 2008).
In the face of such hostile business climate, however, some business organization that belongs to the “wise group’’ started thinking of how to pull their resource together by the way of merger and acquisition as a survival cum growth strategy.
Business merger and acquisition has played an important role in the growth and survival of many firms in Europe, USA, and Nigeria. Firms are less likely to grow through mergers and acquisitions when stocks are booming (Beckenstein, 1979).
Aggregate financial market conditions do not impact on the nature of merger or acquisition. The relation between GDP growth and growth of firms through mergers and acquisitions is positive when firms seek immediate increases in production capacity in a growing economy. The desire for firm to grow through a merger or an acquisition might in turn be tempered by bad business conditions. In overall the empirical evidence between GDP growth and growth of firms through mergers and acquisitions is limited and mixed (Beckenstein, 1979). Industry variables are operationalized by assessing concentration and sales growth in the industry. According to Luypaert (2008), in highly concentrated industries, firms tend to recognize the impact of their policies and actions on one another. This could influence reactions to changes in competitive behavior like quantity restrictions, tacit collusion and horizontal mergers and acquisitions to increase the concentration within an industry which may help firms to realize market power. Thus, a positive relation between industry concentration and external growth may arise particularly in related mergers and acquisitions. Conversely, when the industry is already highly concentrated, it could have a lower incidence of mergers and acquisitions as there is less room left for further consolidation. Also, antitrust authorities may closely scrutinize newly planned deals when industries are already highly concentrated.  Large and profitable firms often have or can better access financial resources that are needed to acquire other firms. Moreover large firms are expected to engage more in diversifying mergers and acquisitions as there may be few opportunities left for growth in their own industry ceteris paribus. These financial resources can also create value when used to acquire a financially constrained target firm thus a positive relation between profitability, firm size and merger and acquisition (Gaughan, 2002).

  • Statement of Problem

In height of the confusion and tumults of the modern business environment globally, some firms have folded up while others only managed to keep afloat. It is but interesting to observe that in the midst of such unfavorable business environment, some enterprises do not merely survive but post super profit. The logical question is what factors could account for the divergent fortunes of some firm of identical size and status in the same industry and operating in the same economy?
Merger and acquisition has become one of the fashionable surviving strategy for many companies.
It is therefore, the intention of the study to investigate the effect of merger and acquisition on the performance of some selected banks in Nigeria.
Further more the study will also seek to establish any possible relationship as otherwise between profitability of a company or increase in its earning per share and its merger and or acquisition scheme.
At this junction, it may be pertinent to acknowledge the view of some experts that many business fusion and acquisition had often resulted in disappointment, as the profit level of the business organization went down. Should this be, the organization wishing to diversify or expand its operation would be compelled to seek out any ailing firm with suitable production plant and technology as well as good distribution network.

  • Objectives Of Study

The study is a deliberate effort to evaluate merger and acquisition as a strategy of survival and growth. The objectives of the study include:

  1. To appraise the financial position of the banks before and after the mergers and acquisitions.
  2. To know whether these banks selected has grown and survived through mergers and acquisitions.
  • To find out whether the profitability of these banks has grown as a result of the merger and acquisition.


  • Statement Of Hypothesis

The hypotheses formulated for this study are:

  • Ho: Corporate firms have not grown and survived through mergers and acquisitions.

Hi:    Corporate firms have grown and survived                                through mergers and acquisitions.

  • Ho: The earning per share of the banks has not            improved since the mergers and

Hi:    The earning per share of the banks has improved since the mergers and acquisitions.

  • Scope and Limitation of Study

This study evaluates corporate growth and survival through mergers and acquisition with special reference to Access bank and First City Monument Bank. The study will not cover the entire banks that were merged and acquired, due to time constraint and finances. Time constraint poses a problem since it will be an uphill task to visit all the banks that were merged since they are dispersed all over the country. Finance; due to lack funds the researcher may not be able to visit all the branches of the banks selected for study. Thus, the materials required for the study may not be easily collected.  Hence the researcher will base her conclusion(s) on the findings from the two banks selected for the study.

  • Significance of Study

With the recent increase in the incidence of investigation and bankruptcy of corporate firms together with dwindling economic situation of the country, there is need for the examination of the effect of business merger and acquisition in the performance of Nigeria business organization. It is however believed that with the study of the companies that are involved with the strategy of merger and acquisition as a means of survival, one would be able to assess the profitability and viability of the strategy being widely adopted in the Nigeria business environment as a survival cum growth strategy.

  • Investors: This study will benefit the investor with regards to assessing the financial position of the firm.
  • Management: Results obtained will help management to assess the effect of merger and acquisition on the performance of the company.
  • Researcher: This study will serve as a secondary source of data for research purposes.

It is in the light of the foregoing that the subject of this study is considered very significant.
1.7   Definition of Terms
Merger: A merger is a process where two previously autonomous companies combine to form a larger company under the common control of a new company comprising of all or a substantial number of the shareholders of both companies. As a result of this arrangement a new company is thereby formed.
Acquisition: An acquisition may be defined as transactions or a series of transactions, where a person (individual, group of individuals, or company) acquires control over the assets of a company either directly or indirectly by obtaining control of the management of such a company.
Growth: This is the process of increasing or developing in size.
Survival: This is the state of continuing to live or to exist.
Corporate Firm: This means a business organization of people who work as a team towards achieving an objective.
Conglomerate: This is when two firms in completely different industries merge, such as a brewing company merging with a high technology company. For example, Nigerian Brewery (NBL) has diversified its businesses through mergers and acquisitions, allowing NBL to get into new areas.
Pre-merger: This is the period before the merger arrangement, where the individual companies have separate identities.
Post-merger: This period after merger arrangement has occurred and a new company has been formed.
1.8   A Brief History of Access Bank:
Access Bank Plc is a full service commercial bank with headquarters in Nigeria and operations cross Sub-Saharan Africa and the United Kingdom.  It was incorporated in February 1989 as a privately owned financial institution and commenced banking operations in May 1989.  It was listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange in 1998. The Bank’s Over the Counter (OTC) Global Depository Receipts (GDRs) are traded on the London Stock Exchange.
In deploying products and services, Access Bank adheres to responsible business practices and readily commits resources to social investments in fulfillment of its corporate social responsibility convictions.  The Bank has more than 1,000,000 investors.  The Bank’s Shareholders’ fund is in excess of US$1.2 billion and its strategic intent is to rank among the top 3 Nigerian banks by 2012. Access bank is a full service commercial bank with a network of over 100 branches and service outlets. In 2005 it acquired Marina and Capital Bank (the former Commercial Bank- Credit Lyonnais Nigeria).
The Bank demonstrates exemplary performance in its financial and non-financial disclosures. Its strengths include a highly diverse Board membership; competent, dynamic and responsible management; strong economic value and good ethical practices and transparent processes.  The list of international organizations that are in partnership with Access Bank Plc includes the Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Visa International, US EXIM and China EXIM Bank.  The understanding and commitment of the Bank’s employees, over 850,000 Shareholders, millions of customers and several partners across the world have been critical to Access Bank’s progress and success. The impact of business merger with Intercontinental Bank is multidimensional and have resulted in geometrical growth across key performances.
1.9   A Brief History of First City Monument Bank
First City Monument Bank (FCMB) is a full service banking group, headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria.
FCMB is the flagship company of the First City Group, one of Nigeria’s leading comprehensive financial services providers. From its early origins in investment banking as City Securities Limited in 1977, FCMB (established in 1982) has emerged as one of the leading financial services institutions in Nigeria, a top 10 bank with subsidiaries that are market leaders in their respective segments.
FCMB was incorporated as a private limited liability company on 20 April 1982 and granted a banking license on 11 August 1983. On 15 July 2004, the Bank changed its status from a private limited liability company to a public limited liability company and was listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange by introduction on 21 December 2004. During the consolidation of 2005, the bank merged with Cooperative Development bank Limited, Nigerian -American Bank limited and eventually acquired Midas Bank limited.
The Bank completed the acquisition of Finbank Plc in February 2012. Following the acquisition, the FCMB Group now has 1.7 million customers, 330 branches and cash-centers spread across every state of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and a presence in the United Kingdom (through its FSA-authorized investment banking subsidiary, FCMB UK) and a representative office in the Republic of South Africa


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