The Role of the Parent Company

Andrew Campbell

in The Oxford Handbook of Strategy

Published in print April 2006 | ISBN: 9780199275212
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Business and Management C

 The Role of the Parent Company

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  • Business and Management
  • Business Strategy
  • Organizational Theory and Behaviour


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This article focuses on the role and influence of corporate parents in multi-business companies. The corporate parent consists of all managers and staff not assigned to a business unit, including not only the corporate headquarters but also the division, group, region, and other intermediate levels of management. Do these parent managers and staff create or destroy value? This issue lies at the heart of the justification for multi-business companies. Unless the parent company is creating value greater than its cost, the business units would be better off as independent companies. The observation that many parent companies today are actually destroying value adds urgency to the need to identify the conditions under which value is likely to be created.

Keywords: multi-business companies; parent company; business units; independent companies; value creation; managers and staff

Article.  8811 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management ; Business Strategy ; Organizational Theory and Behaviour

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