The Influence of Cash Flow Patterns on Random Organizational Development in Nigerian Listed Companies

Chizoba Ekwueme, Rosemary Obiageri Obasi, Sadiq Rabiu Abdullahi, Umar Aliyu Mustapha, Norfadzilah Rashid


The objective of this study is to examine whether companies’ life cycle stages follow a random or sequential developmental pattern using their cash flow patterns. That is to ascertain the optimum life cycle stage of Nigerian companies. Data were obtained from the sampled firms annual reports and accounts, which comprises 79 listed companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) from 2009 to 2013 financial years. The cash flow patterns of the firms were thematically analysed as a proxy of developmental patterns, and transition rates between developmental stages were determined. The study reveals that Introduction firms at T0 transited quickly to the Mature stage (70% in T1 through T3), whereas Growth firms developed most rapidly into Shakeout firms (38% at T1). The Mature stage was most stable; 57–65% of firms in this stage at T0 remained so. By contrast, 60% of Decline firms remained in this stage at T1 before transiting to the Mature and Growth stages at T3 and then ultimately fading away at T4, leaving only the Introduction (20%) and Decline (20%) stages. Thus, the development of firms from one life cycle stage to another is random and not sequential. The study, therefore, recommends that Nigerian companies experience their optimum life cycle stage at the matured stage and firms should employ the use of cash flow patterns to identify their business life cycle stage as this will enable companies to apply strategies to sustain themselves at a target stage of the life cycle.

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Research in World Economy
ISSN 1923-3981(Print)ISSN 1923-399X(Online)


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