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The internationalisation of 'high performing' UK high-tech SMEs: a study of planned and unplanned strategies

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  • Crick, Dave
  • Spence, Martine
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    Abstract

    This paper discusses the findings from an investigation into the internationalisation strategies of 'high performing' UK high-tech small and medium-sized enterprises. Findings from 12 in-depth interviews suggest that strategy formation is not as systematic as some previous studies, notably those that focus on the 'stage' models, suggest. Management teams anticipate and react to internal and external factors in various ways; this affects the way in which opportunity recognition and exploitation takes place. This ranges from planned strategy formation through to opportunistic behaviour. The results suggest that while support for certain existing theories namely the resource based view, networking, and contingency factors was evident, no single theory could fully explain entrepreneurial decisions. In particular, 'serendipity' as part of the contingency view may be an under researched area. The findings support the literature that has suggested a more holistic view should be undertaken in international entrepreneurship research.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Business Review.

    Volume (Year): 14 (2005)
    Issue (Month): 2 (April)
    Pages: 167-185

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:iburev:v:14:y:2005:i:2:p:167-185

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    Related research

    Keywords: High-tech Internationalisation Serendipity SMEs;

    References

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    1. C Patrick Woodcook & Paul W Beamish & Shige Makino, 1994. "Ownership-Based Entry mode Strategies and International Performance," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 25(2), pages 253-273, June.
    2. Kumar, V. & Subramanian, Velavan, 1997. "A contingency framework for the mode of entry decision," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 53-72, April.
    3. Boter, Hakan & Holmquist, Carin, 1996. "Industry characteristics and internationalization processes in small firms," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 11(6), pages 471-487, November.
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    Cited by:
    1. Hagen, Birgit & Zucchella, Antonella & Cerchiello, Paola & De Giovanni, Nicolò, 2012. "International strategy and performance—Clustering strategic types of SMEs," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 369-382.
    2. Roger Schweizer, 2013. "SMEs and networks: Overcoming the liability of outsidership," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 80-103, March.
    3. Perks, Keith J. & Hughes, Mathew, 2008. "Entrepreneurial decision-making in internationalization: Propositions from mid-size firms," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 310-330, June.
    4. Kontinen, Tanja & Ojala, Arto, 2011. "Network ties in the international opportunity recognition of family SMEs," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 440-453, August.
    5. Mara Del Baldo & Selena Aureli, 2012. "Networks’ Contribution To Small-Sized Firms’internationalization," The International Journal of Economic Behavior - IJEB, Faculty of Business and Administration, University of Bucharest, vol. 2(1), pages 47-66, December.
    6. Nordman, Emilia Rovira & Tolstoy, Daniel, 2014. "Does relationship psychic distance matter for the learning processes of internationalizing SMEs?," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 30-37.
    7. Lindstrand, Angelika & Melén, Sara & Nordman, Emilia Rovira, 2011. "Turning social capital into business: A study of the internationalization of biotech SMEs," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 194-212, April.
    8. Zhang, Marina Y. & Dodgson, Mark, 2007. ""A roasted duck can still fly away": A case study of technology, nationality, culture and the rapid and early internationalization of the firm," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 336-349, September.
    9. Freeman, Susan & Hutchings, Kate & Lazaris, Miria & Zyngier, Suzanne, 2010. "A model of rapid knowledge development: The smaller born-global firm," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 70-84, February.
    10. Ojala, Arto, 2009. "Internationalization of knowledge-intensive SMEs: The role of network relationships in the entry to a psychically distant market," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 50-59, February.
    11. Arto Ojala & Pasi Tyrväinen, 2006. "Business models and market entry mode choice of small software firms," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 69-81, September.
    12. Huan Zou & Xiaohui Liu & Pervez Ghauri, 2010. "Technology Capability And The Internationalization Strategies Of New Ventures," Organizations and Markets in Emerging Economies, Faculty of Economics, Vilnius University, vol. 1(1).
    13. Petrit Gashi & Iraj Hashi & Geoff Pugh, 2014. "Export behaviour of SMEs in transition countries," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 42(2), pages 407-435, February.
    14. Eberhard, Manuel & Craig, Justin, 2013. "The evolving role of organisational and personal networks in international market venturing," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 48(3), pages 385-397.
    15. Gassmann, Oliver & Keupp, Marcus Matthias, 2007. "The competitive advantage of early and rapidly internationalising SMEs in the biotechnology industry: A knowledge-based view," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 350-366, September.
    16. Rainer Harms & Holger Schiele, 2012. "Antecedents and consequences of effectuation and causation in the international new venture creation process," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 95-116, June.
    17. Sigfusson, Thor & Harris, Simon, 2013. "Domestic market context and international entrepreneurs’ relationship portfolios," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 243-258.
    18. Schweizer, Roger, 2012. "The internationalization process of SMEs: A muddling-through process," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 65(6), pages 745-751.
    19. Hulbert, Bev & Gilmore, Audrey & Carson, David, 2013. "Sources of opportunities used by growth minded owner managers of small and medium sized enterprises," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 293-303.
    20. Nordman, Emilia Rovira & Melén, Sara, 2008. "The impact of different kinds of knowledge for the internationalization process of Born Globals in the biotech business," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 171-185, March.
    21. Schwens, Christian & Kabst, Ruediger, 2011. "Internationalization of young technology firms: A complementary perspective on antecedents of foreign market familiarity," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 60-74, February.
    22. Ciravegna, Luciano & Lopez, Luis & Kundu, Sumit, 2014. "Country of origin and network effects on internationalization: A comparative study of SMEs from an emerging and developed economy," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(5), pages 916-923.

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