Horizontal Integration

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DEFINITION of 'Horizontal Integration'

The acquisition of additional business activities that are at the same level of the value chain in similar or different industries. This can be achieved by internal or external expansion. Because the different firms are involved in the same stage of production, horizontal integration allows them to share resources at that level. If the products offered by the companies are the same or similar, it is a merger of competitors. If all of the producers of a particular good or service in a given market were to merge, it would result in the creation of a monopoly. Also called lateral integration.

BREAKING DOWN 'Horizontal Integration'

Examples of horizontal integration include an oil company's acquisition of additional oil refineries, or an automobile manufacturer's acquisition of a light truck manufacturer. Horizontal integration offers several advantages, including favorable economies of scale, economies or scope, increased market power and reduction in the costs associated with international trade by operating in foreign markets. Horizontal integration is in contrast to vertical integration, where firms expand into different activities, known as upstream or downstream activities.

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RELATED FAQS
  1. How does horizontal integration allow companies to share resources?

    In a horizontal integration, a company either acquires another company or merges with that company. This allows the resulting ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Why should management teams focus more on horizontal integration?

    Management teams should focus more on horizontal integrations because they allow for economies of scale, economies of scope, ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. What business structures expose entrepreneurs to unlimited liability?

    A company that seeks to expand through a horizontal integration can achieve economies of scale, economies of scope, increased ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How do I calculate the Macaulay duration of a zero-coupon bond in Excel?

    A horizontal integration consists of companies that acquire a similar company in the same industry, while a vertical integration ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. How are direct costs allocated differently than indirect costs?

    One of the clearest examples of horizontal integration is Facebook's acquisition of Instagram in 2012 for a reported $1 billion. ... Read Full Answer >>
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    "Finance" is a broad term that describes two related activities: the study of how money is managed and the actual process ... Read Full Answer >>
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