Swedish fashion companies go abroad: a study on small and medium-size fashion companies’ internationalization processes
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
The Swedish fashion industry is one of the fastest growing export industries and in recent years the Swedish fashion companies have been praised for their international expansion. For companies with niche products in smaller markets like Sweden internationalization is important but since the industry is constantly changing the internationalization process is quite challenging. Previous studies show that internationalization can be profitable for fashion companies but there is no unified view among researchers as to which way is the right way for the companies to internationalize. Most studies come to the general conclusion that companies seem to follow different paths. The purpose of this study is to contribute to the knowledge development of internationalization for small and medium-sized Swedish fashion companies based on established theories of internationalization. A qualitative study has been conducted based on a multiple case study design with 12 participating Swedish fashion companies. The study has a deductive approach since it has its starting point is from a well-established theoretical model: The Business Network Internationalization Process Model which has also worked as a foundation for the study’s analytical model. The analysis is however partly inductive since findings in the result have been fed back into a modified theoretical model, suitable and applicable for Swedish fashion companies’ internationalization processes. In conclusion the findings indicate that there are several important knowledge-bases for the fashion companies that motivate them to start an internationalization process, mainly their design-driven vision of becoming an international brand and the management’s risk-taking business mindset, founded in their entrepreneurial skills and previous knowledge. The result also shows that relationships with different industry actors are of high importance for the companies and in many cases the only way to internationalize. In addition the results show not only that the established theoretical model on internationalization is applicable to Swedish fashion companies but that there also are tendencies that show that the Swedish companies follow a more chronological path in their processes.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Internationalization process, Small to medium-sized enterprises, fashion industry, knowledge-based motivation
Economics and Business
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-10288OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-10288DiVA: diva2:944450
Subject / course