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When is a firm ready to go abroad? An analysis of SME internationalization readiness
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
2013 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The overall purpose of this thesis is to gain a better understanding of the internationalization readiness process of firms, by identifying and describing and its components. In order to reach the purpose of this thesis a case study of four Swedish SMEs has been conducted, namely: MaxiGrip AB, Playsay AB, Flano Design AB and KOTP. Face-to-face interviews were carried out with the main decision makers within the firms.

The theoretical framework involves a description of different internationalization theories, such as the transaction cost approach, the traditional “stage” model, the network approach and the international entrepreneurship approach. Based on these four internationalization theories has the traditional “stage” model been chosen to function as a theoretical foundation for the analysis.

In the analysis the theoretical framework is related to the results of the empirical study. The barriers faced by firms prior to internationalization are discussed and analysed, as well as theimportance of each barrier, resulting in internal barriers being regarded of greater importance. The decision maker’s role and influence during the process is described as highly influential. The key success factors enabling the internationalization readiness process of firms are identified and discussed, namely: vision and international outlook of decision makers, having a unique offering, the availability of time and vast industry knowledge.

It is concluded that a firm is able to achieve internationalization readiness by fulfilling a certain criteria, which has been the result of the combination of both theory and empirical data. Resulting in the decision maker being at the center of the process. While, the internal stimuli of industry knowledge and product uniqueness are the two main influencers combined with time  and commitment. At last, both theoretical and managerial implications are presented, ending this paper with the limitations and suggestions for further research.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Internationalization readiness, pre-internationalization, barriers, SMEs, pre-export, decision maker, firm preparedness.
National Category
Economics and Business
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-27514OAI: diva2:636611
Subject / course
Business Administration - Marketing
Educational program
International Business Strategy, Master Programme 60 credits
Available from: 2013-07-11 Created: 2013-07-10 Last updated: 2013-07-11Bibliographically approved

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