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When Size Does Matter. Trends of SMEs Internationalization Strategies in Chinese Economy

Listed author(s):
  • Andrea Pontiggia


    (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice)

  • Tiziano Vescovi


    (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice)

Registered author(s):

    The strategies of internationalization have been one of hottest topics in managerial literature in the last decade. Interestingly to notice how deep and unexpected changes have challenged the mainstream of international management theories. This paper illustrates a framework and some preliminary results aim to comprehend how and why MMNEs (Medium-size Multinational Entreprise) internationalization strategies deviate from the more established strategies of multinational and global companies (MNC). We study a sample of Italian SMEs, analyzing the strategy choice and the governance models adopted in China businesses. Qualitative analysis highlights both the feasibility and sustainability of governance models (criteria and components) and forms (model execution and implementation). This paper investigates the specificities of SMEs: The adaptation process and, in some cases, the innovative governance forms analyzed in our sample of cases (described in the paper) are strongly affected by the following factors: first, the size does not fit the potential or actual dimension of market (size factor); Second, increasing difficulties to access to the countries? institutional externalities and strong reliance on the efficiency of markets in order to purchase product and services which they can not internalize (make or buy factor);. Third, negative effects of size preventing to reach arrangements with local and national government (government and local shareholders factor); Fourth, being part of the supply chain of larger firms (MNC) is a common entry mode in Chinese market. Last factor refers to the lack of resources (human, market and relational capital).

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    Paper provided by Department of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia in its series Working Papers with number 28.

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    Length: 29 pages
    Date of creation: Dec 2013
    Handle: RePEc:vnm:wpdman:64
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    1. Contractor, Farok J. & Kumar, Vikas & Kundu, Sumit K., 2007. "Nature of the relationship between international expansion and performance: The case of emerging market firms," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 42(4), pages 401-417, December.
    2. Farok J Contractor & Sumit K Kundu & Chin-Chun Hsu, 2003. "A three-stage theory of international expansion: the link between multinationality and performance in the service sector," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 34(1), pages 5-18, January.
    3. Liu, Xiaohui & Buck, Trevor, 2007. "Innovation performance and channels for international technology spillovers: Evidence from Chinese high-tech industries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 355-366, April.
    4. Zhou, Lianxi, 2007. "The effects of entrepreneurial proclivity and foreign market knowledge on early internationalization," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 281-293, September.
    5. Knight, Gary A., 2001. "Entrepreneurship and strategy in the international SME," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 155-171.
    6. Luo, Yadong & Sun, Jinyun & Wang, Stephanie Lu, 2011. "Comparative strategic management: An emergent field in international management," Journal of International Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 190-200, September.
    7. Ram Mudambi & Pietro Navarra, 2004. "Is knowledge power? Knowledge flows, subsidiary power and rent-seeking within MNCs," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 35(5), pages 385-406, September.
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