Theoretical explanations

In order to extend our understanding, studies that not only explain the creation of new ventures or start-ups, but go beyond this initial internationalization period and examine the factors underpinning sustainable international competitiveness of emerging market MNCs that have already internationalized successfully (Kothari, Kotabe & Murphy, 2013), will be an important area of future research in international business and internal entrepreneurship. We describe these phases as the ‘creation’ (inception and early growth) and ‘postinternationalization’ (maturity, establishment and consolidation) development (Trudgen & Freeman, 2007). This research will contribute to the existing body of knowledge by extending the application of traditional and current theories to emerging market MNCs, emphasizing the social context (that elevates the importance of business networks, social personal ties and social linkages in order to do business) (Lindstrand & Melen Hanell, 2017). The most prevalent theories are the resource-based view (RBV) (Barney, 1986a, 1986b, 1991; Penrose, 1959; Peteraf, 1993; Wernerfelt, 1984), contingency theory (Chandler, 1962; Lawrence & Lorsch, 1967) and the Linkage, Leverage and Learning (LLL) framework (Mathews, 2006), the latter specifically devised to explain how emerging MNCs internationalize through a rich social context and develop international and market-specific social capital (Lindstrand & Melen Hanell, 2017) to navigate complex institutional frameworks. These theories can be offered as platforms for the way new models might be developed in future research.

Global startups (bornglobals and transnational entrepreneurs

Born-globals are frequently defined as “small, technology-oriented companies that operate in international markets from the earliest days of their establishment” (Knight & Cavusgil, 1996, p. 11). Common characteristics of this type of firm are that they are young, knowledge-intensive companies that self-develop and innovate with a focus on tech-based products for global markets (Almor, 2011: Knight & Cavusgil, 2004; McDougall & Oviatt, 2000). There has been considerable research since the late 1980s, yet little progress has been made to identify the role individual entrepreneurs play in developing these firms (Karra et al., 2008). One stream of research emphasizes the primary influence of managers’ past experiences, current goals and ambitions, and motivation (Madsen & Servais, 1997). As discussed earlier, the knowledge-based view is frequently drawn on to study the internationalization process of born-globals (Hohenthal et al., 2014).

Transnational entrepreneurs have an important role as bridge spanners across national boundaries that have a considerable influence on the development of local industries (Saxenian, 2002, 2007; Wadhwa et al., 2011). Studies have examined reuirnee entrepreneurs, but transnational entrepreneurs significantly differ from returnee entrepreneurs. For example, returnee entrepreneurs are primarily focused on their original home country markets, though some do adopt an international orientation relying on their experience and ethnic social ties in countries from which they have returned (Lin & Tao, 2012). By contrast, transnational entrepreneurs are far more likely to exploit advantages in the global market by leveraging their transnational experience, and proactively responding to perceived demand for their products or sendees. Importantly, the founding manager/entrepreneur’s international experiences assist in mobilizing knowledge flows that stretch beyond the geographical boundaries of the home ox- domestic market and support global market expansion. The advantage of international experience of transnational entrepreneurs is that it helps to mitigate barriers and support a born-global’s interactions and negotiations with businesses in other cultures (Kuemmerle, 2005). Also, the social capital of migration is a significant antecedent and plays a central role in prompting the international growth and development of start-ups (Prashantham & Dhanaraj, 2010). Transnational entrepreneurs with the right type of international social capital can facilitate a new firm's rapid growth on a global scale. Thus, compared with returnee entrepreneurs, transnational entrepreneurs are more likely to develop into start-ups on a global rather than national or single international market scale. Specifically, transnational entrepreneurs that possess both advanced technological know-how and an entrepreneurial orientation are in a strong position to commercialize their technological capabilities and innovations, and create further alliances with international markets to expand their scope of opportunity (Liu, 2017; Yan et al„ 2018).

Collaborative entry mode and born global growth

Collaborative entry mode is a critical decision regarding organizational form fox- firms wishing to internationalize (Gomes et al., 2011). For example, collaborative arrangexnent helps firxns to access the necessary resources (Speckbacher et al., 2015). In addition, knowledge protection and institutional safeguards impact foreign market entry modal choice of SMEs (Maekelburger et al., 2012). Therefore, investigation of the impact of collaborative entry mode choice on firm growth is important. Growth of a firm can be observed as a process view (Leitch et al., 2010) and comparing the process perspective with instimtional context provides deeper understanding of born-globals' growth, which is combined with the transnational entrepreneur’s role. During growth, collaborative entry modes play an important role for the transnational entrepreneur because, as born-globals export products overseas, collaboration can reduce resource constraints and is helpful in managing uxicertainty. Significantly, born-globals generate most of their incoxne from overseas xnarket activities (Coviello, 2015), requiring intensive interaction with their overseas partners in managing axid developing the business.

Collaborative entxy modes are dynamic relationships with multiple sellers and buyers interacting with each other over time (Narayandas & Rangan, 2004). Collaborative entry modes facilitate observation and adaptation through interactive relationships with foreign partners. A recent study demonstrates that maturing technology-based born-globals can increase survival through acquisition (Almor et al., 2014). Finally, born-globals usually possess limited resources as they typically begin their global strategy at or near inception, which can considerably constrain entry mode choices. Furthermore, a recent study revealed that maturing born-globals’ HRM practices evolve over time as resource constraints change (Glaister et ah, 2014).

 
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