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Expansion to foreign markets: Usaflex

Paula Holanda Cavalcanti Sirimarco (IAG Business School, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Luiza Neves Marques da Fonseca (IAG Business School, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)

Publication date: 30 May 2020


Learning outcomes

The case seeks to meet the following educational objectives: provide an understanding of the problems and opportunities faced by a company doing business in a rapidly expanding emerging market. Understand how the foreign environment and industry practices impinge on the company’s strategic conduct. Develop the ability to evaluate strategic internationalization decisions in light of considerations related to uncertainty, risk and commitment. Provide for the application of internationalization theories to a real case involving an emerging country company. Discuss new strategies for international market expansion.

Case overview/synopsis

This case study is about the strategic change of the Usaflex brand and how it impacted its national and international expansion. Usaflex is a Brazilian footwear company founded in 1998 and acquired in 2016 by a group of partners. The new managers started an accelerated process of national and international expansion. In the domestic market, the company adopted the franchise system and in the international market used licensed stores. In addition, the new management implemented a series of modifications, changing the positioning, design and product variety, as well as the communication strategy. This process took place in a highly negative context, with the domestic market suffering the impact of a strong recession and Brazilian footwear exports losing competitiveness in the international market.

Complexity academic level

The targeted audience of this case is undergraduate and MBA students of Business Management courses, specifically on International Business courses.

Supplementary materials

Teaching Notes are available for educators only.

Subject code

CSS 5: International Business.



Disclaimer. This case is written solely for educational purposes and is not intended to represent successful or unsuccessful managerial decision-making. The authors may have disguised names; financial and other recognizable information to protect confidentiality.


Sirimarco, P.H.C. and da Fonseca, L.N.M. (2020), "Expansion to foreign markets: Usaflex", , Vol. 10 No. 2.



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