The aim of the paper is to analyse the main features of the external growth strategies implemented by Italian banks. Most studies on this subject have concentrated on the United States market, using different sample groups of banks and time-scales, while only a few have focused on the operations implemented on the European markets, and the number analysing the Italian market is even smaller. The study is based on a description of the consolidation process for the time period 1993-98, analysing a total sample of 76 bidder and 166 target banks in order to allow the identification and evaluation of the main approaches adopted and the underling motives. The analysis of the effects on branch network structure and balance sheet data has been conducted on smaller sample groups of banks.The first section sheds light on some theoretical background factors which also define the main reasons behind M&A operations in the banking system and describes the sample of banks analysed in the study. The analysis then evolves in three complementary directions, intended to describe the phenomenon in Italy (section 2); specifically, the objective is:- to identify the most common policies for external growth and the aggregation strategies pursued, by processing and interpreting the data covering all the operations involving Italian banks during 1993-98 (sections 2.1 and 2.2);- to measure the consolidation process in term of the branch network on a smaller sample of banks involved in large-scale operations (section 2.3.), - to analyse absolute and relative sizes of bidder and target banks using a series of explanatory balance-sheet parameters (section 2.4.).The aim is to identify possible factors for consideration derived from the data available on this topic and not to draw conclusions valid for all banks in general. The results make no claim to provide exhaustive coverage of the question of the effects of growth, but can be considered as preliminary findings and the basis for subsequent studies working towards a more thorough investigation of the relationship between the structure of the markets’ and banks’ economic performance.
Cosma, Stefano e Paola, Vezzani. "Mergers and acquisition trends in the italian banking system from 1993 to 1998" Working paper, Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia, Dipartimento di Economia Aziendale (Materiali di discussione), 1999.