In the Shadow of the Valley: Private Equity Firms’ Increased Prominence in High-Tech Acquisitions

Paul Nary and Harbir Singh, Management, The Wharton School

Abstract: Why and how do private equity (PE) firms engage in technology acquisitions, and how do they create and capture value in these transactions? Observational data shows initial evidence that not only are PE firms engaging in an increasing number of technology buyouts, they are also seemingly behaving in distinct ways from both corporate acquirers, as well as PE firms in industries other than high-tech. With the proposed project, we intend to make multiple contributions to the literature that investigates technology acquisitions, as well as the literature stream that analyzes the role and behavior of PE acquirers in public and private markets and the potential advantages and disadvantages of PE ownership as a distinct form of governance from that of corporate ownership.