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International business competence and the contemporary firm

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Author Info

  • Gary A Knight

    (College of Business, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL, USA)

  • Daekwan Kim

    (College of Business, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL, USA)

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    Abstract

    The trend of increasing internationalization of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) is noteworthy, because such firms typically have far fewer financial and tangible resources than large multinational enterprises. As a result, international business is often more challenging for smaller firms. In this study we investigate the widespread internationalization of SMEs, and specific factors that support their superior performance abroad. We uncover a collection of intangible capabilities that are especially salient to these firms and their growing international involvement. We identify international business competence (IBC) as an intangible, overarching firm resource that engenders superior international performance in the international SME. Through case studies and a comprehensive literature review, we identify four dimensions of IBC. We devise and assess a model that links IBC to SME international performance. Results suggest that international orientation, international marketing skills, international innovativeness, and international market orientation are all significant dimensions of IBC, and that IBC is instrumental in SME international performance. We discuss resultant findings and offer managerial implications. Journal of International Business Studies (2009) 40, 255–273; doi:10.1057/palgrave.jibs.8400397

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Palgrave Macmillan in its journal Journal of International Business Studies.

    Volume (Year): 40 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 2 (February)
    Pages: 255-273

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    Handle: RePEc:pal:jintbs:v:40:y:2009:i:2:p:255-273

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    Web page: http://www.palgrave-journals.com/

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    Postal: Palgrave Macmillan Journals, Subscription Department, Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire RG21 6XS, UK
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    Cited by:
    1. Fleury, Afonso & Fleury, Maria Tereza Leme & Borini, Felipe Mendes, 2012. "Is production the core competence for the internationalization of emerging country firms?," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 140(1), pages 439-449.
    2. Casillas, José C. & Moreno, Ana M. & Acedo, Francisco J., 2012. "Path dependence view of export behaviour: A relationship between static patterns and dynamic configurations," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 465-479.
    3. Indujeeva Peiris & Michèle Akoorie & Paresha Sinha, 2012. "International entrepreneurship: A critical analysis of studies in the past two decades and future directions for research," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 279-324, December.
    4. Kontinen, Tanja & Ojala, Arto, 2010. "The internationalization of family businesses: A review of extant research," Journal of Family Business Strategy, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 97-107, June.
    5. Boehe, Dirk Michael, 2011. "Collaborate at home to win abroad: How does access to local network resources influence export behavior?," Insper Working Papers wpe_248, Insper Working Paper, Insper Instituto de Ensino e Pesquisa.
    6. Nishant Kumar, 2012. "The resource dynamics of early internationalising Indian IT firms," Journal of International Entrepreneurship, Springer, vol. 10(3), pages 255-278, September.
    7. Majidah Hassan Author_Email: NIL & Grace McCarthy, 2011. "Influential Organisational Capabilities For Smes’ Export Performance: An Exploratory Study," Annual Summit on Business and Entrepreneurial Studies (ASBES 2011) Proceeding 2011-045-168, Conference Master Resources.
    8. Somnath Lahiri, 2011. "India-focused publications in leading international business journals," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 28(2), pages 427-447, June.

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