This thesis is contributing with a renewed look on how corporations are managing their portfolios of business areas. In a world of constant change, there has been a clear need for reviewing this area, since the acknowledged theories and portfolio matrixes are from the last century. A combination of more recent theory relevant to this area and qualitative case studies on some of the largest Danish corporations has created a new framework on the important factors when managing a diversified portfolio of businesses. These corporations were all leading global players within their respective core businesses, but they were also managing other smaller businesses as well. It was discovered that many of these smaller businesses were created as strategic platforms for ensuring future growth, and they were justified with having some kind of relations to the core. The complexity of managing a portfolio of different business areas is twofold. On one side it needs to be ensured that each of the areas is getting the appropriate amount of attention to enable its required focus and be able to grow its individual business. On the other side synergies between businesses need to be managed, which can be challenging if they are set up in different business units. If great synergies are possible among related businesses then having one diversified business unit to manage them might be the right option as long as it does not hurt their focus. The case studies also showed how the corporations’ financial situations with regard to their equity ratios played an important part in the way they managed their portfolios. When the equity ratio was low, non-core businesses that were worth more to other parent companies were typically being sold off. Existing theory on the area has proven that corporations would often get selling prices that were higher than what the businesses were worth to them. Finally, it has been concluded that when corporations are reviewing their growth opportunities they would first look at the attractiveness of possible initiatives within their current businesses. If there are more attractive business areas outside their portfolios, and these are some they would like to pursue then the risk must be considered. The risk associated with entering new businesses is heavily depended on the limitations of the corporation’s genetic structure, and the willingness to take upon that risk must be guided by its equity ratio to ensure the future survival of the corporation in case of failure.
|Educations||MSc in Economics and Marketing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis|
|Number of pages||109|