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Value creation of an internationalizing entrepreneurial firm: The business model perspective

Liisa‐Maija Sainio (School of Business, Lappeenranta University of Technology, Lappeenranta, Finland)
Sami Saarenketo (School of Business, Lappeenranta University of Technology, Lappeenranta, Finland)
Niina Nummela (School of Economics, University of Turku, Turku, Finland)
Taina Eriksson (School of Economics, University of Turku, Turku, Finland)

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development

ISSN: 1462-6004

Article publication date: 9 August 2011

Abstract

Purpose

In order to respond to the call for a broader perspective on the internationalization of entrepreneurial firms, this study aims to bring the business model concept to the context of international entrepreneurship, with special emphasis on the notion of value formation and value exchange at company interfaces.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a cross‐case study based on qualitative data from business model workshops with key company informants in each case firm.

Findings

The findings of the study indicate that, although the business models of firms with comparable positions may appear similar, there are fine‐grained differences both in their activities and in their value formation. In addition, the data collection workshops revealed that firms tend to neglect the inspection of their incentives to their partners, as they concentrate on value formation to end‐customers.

Practical implications

From the managerial point of view, the study shows how the managers of international entrepreneurial firms may describe and analyze their business model, including the whole value chain, systematically from the perspective of value exchange. Firms may gain insights from examining the business models of similar organizations.

Originality/value

Even though the role of the business model has also been discussed in previous studies, it has not been so explicitly pronounced in the domain of international entrepreneurship. The paper contributes to previous business model conceptualizations by adding the notion of value exchange at the company interfaces.

Keywords

Citation

Sainio, L., Saarenketo, S., Nummela, N. and Eriksson, T. (2011), "Value creation of an internationalizing entrepreneurial firm: The business model perspective", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 18 No. 3, pp. 556-570. https://doi.org/10.1108/14626001111155709

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited