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The Natuzzi Group and the Bari-Matera (Italy) upholstered furniture district. A case study of internationalisation in a traditional industry

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Abstract

The case-study focuses on the strategies adopted by the Natuzzi Group, world leader of the upholstered furniture sector, located in the Bari-Matera district (Southern Italy), to face increasing global competition and on their effects. In particular we consider the modes and determinants of productive internationalisation, carried out since 2000 by Natuzzi in China, Brazil and Romania to produce middle-low end products. By improving the competitiveness of the price-sensitive segment, the strategy contributed to the successful expansion of the Group until 2002. However, high range products, manufactured in Italy, record decreasing sales especially on the US market, despite the companys efforts in R&D and marketing and its investments in information technology. Moreover, due to Natuzzi's considerable weight in the district, the Groups performance impacts on the network of subcontracting firms, where a restructuring process is underway, raising questions about the evolution of the district.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for Industrial Studies (CSIL) in its series Working Papers with number 200903.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: 18 Jun 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mst:wpaper:200903

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Keywords: Internationalisation; Industrial District; Subcontracting;

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  1. Stefano Costa & Giovanni Ferri, 2008. "Firing at Subcontractors? Spillover Employment Effects of Offshoring in Italy," Development Working Papers 238, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano.
  2. Anna Giunta & Francesco Trivieri, 2007. "Understanding the determinants of information technology adoption: evidence from Italian manufacturing firms," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(10), pages 1325-1334.
  3. Stefano Federico & Gaetano Alfredo Minerva, 2007. "Outward FDI and local employment growth in Italy," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 613, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  4. Giovannetti Giorgia & Mazzeo Elena, 2008. "Industrial Structure and Competitiveness: Crucial Elements in the Internationalization of the Italian Economy," L'industria, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 117-134.
  5. Massimo Florio & Anna Giunta, 1998. "Planning Contracts in Southern Italy, 1986-1997: a Prelimary Evaluation," Departmental Working Papers 1998-04, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
  6. Davide Castellani & Ilaria Mariotti & Lucia Piscitello, 2006. "Outward investments and skill upgrading. Evidence from the Italian case," KITeS Working Papers 185, KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy, revised Nov 2006.
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