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Published by:
Copenhagen Business School (CBS) (2015)
10 pages
Data source:
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This case describes two diverging post-acquisition experiences of KazOil, an oil drilling company in Kazakhstan, in the years after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. When the company was bought by the Canadian corporation Hydrocarbons Ltd in 1996, exposed to new human resource strategies and corporate culture and management style, it seemed to adapt more successfully than in 2005, when China Petrol acquired the assets. The case opens up with Nurlan - a company’s long-time employee - reflecting on the recently introduced changes by the Chinese management, wondering how he should adapt in order to ensure employee’s motivation despite the lack of corporate spirit. The case can be taught in a broad range of university level courses, covering the spectrum from pure strategy and human resources management to cross-cultural management courses. The lecturer should use this case to sharpen awareness among students that cultural distance is not the main determinant for the success of social integration mechanisms in post-acquisition situations. On the contrary, the relationship between integration instrument and integration success is also governed by contextual factors such as the attractiveness of the acquisition target or state of development of HRM in the target country. This case is part of the CBS free case collection (visit www.thecasecentre.org/CBSfreecases for more information on the collection).

Teaching and learning

This item is suitable for undergraduate, postgraduate and executive education courses.


Human resource management (HRM); Multinational corporations; Cross-cultural management; Mergers & acquisitions (M&A); Oil; Social responsibility; Motivation; Strategy; Corporate culture; Change management


The events covered by this item took place in 1996-2005.

Geographical setting


Featured company

Company name:
Oil drilling

Featured protagonist

  • Nurlan Ospanov (male), Head of Corporate Finance

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