Do Hostile Takeovers Stifle Innovation? Evidence from Antitakeover Legislation and Corporate Patenting

  • Published: May 20, 2013
  • Pages: 1097-1131
  • DOI: 10.1111/jofi.12019


I examine how strong corporate governance proxied by the threat of hostile takeovers affects innovation and firm value. I find a significant decline in the number of patents and citations per patent for firms incorporated in states that pass antitakeover laws relative to firms incorporated in states that do not. Most of the impact of antitakeover laws on innovation occurs 2 or more years after they are passed, indicating a causal effect. The negative effect of antitakeover laws is mitigated by the presence of alternative governance mechanisms such as large shareholders, pension fund ownership, leverage, and product market competition.

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