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It is when we all play safe that we create a world of utmost insecurity: A qualitative study of Swedish B2B SMEs risk perception when internationalizing to East Africa
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
Linnaeus University, School of Business and Economics, Department of Marketing.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this thesis is to describe and analyze how five Swedish business-to-business (B2B) small- and medium sized enterprises (SME) perceive risk when internationalizing to East African countries. By distinguishing these risks the aim has been to increase the understanding and awareness of the affect that these risks can have on a firm’s internationalization process. To be able to gain a deeper insight of the reality the study has been conducted with a qualitative method and an inductive research approach. The primary data has been collected by conducting interviews with the firms that has been a part of this multiple case study. In order to increase the understanding and thereby fulfill the purpose of this study, the main research question is formulated as follows: how do Swedish B2B SMEs perceive the various risks that they face when internationalizing to East African countries?

The theoretical framework has its foundation within the risk theory which is connected to the Uppsala internationalization model, the network theory, motives and triggers for internationalization and the choice of entry mode. The empirical data describes how the case companies entered the East African market, which risks they have encountered and how knowledge has affected their risk perception.

In the analysis the empirical data and the theoretical framework is discussed in order to see whether the theories corresponds with the reality of these firms. Furthermore the analysis describes how the firms’ knowledge and relations affect their perception of risk, which risks the firms have encountered within the general environment, industry environment and the firm specific environment as well as how their previous knowledge has affected their perception of risk.

The conclusion indicates that Swedish B2B SMEs internationalizing to East African countries encounter several risks, however the perception of these risks differentiates based on the firms previous knowledge of the market. The significance lie within being aware of the risks and thereby being able to see these risks as strategically manageable.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 71 p.
Keyword [en]
Risk, uncertainty, East Africa, small- and medium sized enterprises, business-to-business, network, knowledge, strategy
Keyword [sv]
Risk, osäkerhet, Östafrika, små- och medelstora företag, business-to-business, nätverk, kunskap, strategi
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-35775OAI: diva2:730643
Subject / course
Business Administration - Other
Educational program
International Business Programme, 180 credits
Available from: 2014-07-01 Created: 2014-06-28 Last updated: 2014-07-01Bibliographically approved

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Jaiteh, MarliJakobsson, Tobias
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